Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby DDGUY » Sun Feb 28, 2016 10:43 am

bwana_don wrote:Did my first track today on bare ice on a lake today. Very different. First thing, the dog was not use to bare ice, made him much slower than usual because of trying to keep his footing. He did not want to concentrate on the track at first like he does in the woods - lots of other new smells. I spent a lot of time waiting for him to get back on the track and encouraging him as well as laying him down a couple of times on the track. It was about 400 yards, the last 100 he was pretty focused and more what I expect and like to see. There was a lot more focus on the blood the where I had walked, I don't think there was any scent left from me by the time I did the track.


Sounds like a beneficial training session. Dog overcomes new situations and distractions and finishes well!
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby Duckdon » Thu Mar 17, 2016 9:05 pm

bwana_don wrote:Did my first track today on bare ice on a lake today. Very different. First thing, the dog was not use to bare ice, made him much slower than usual because of trying to keep his footing. He did not want to concentrate on the track at first like he does in the woods - lots of other new smells. I spent a lot of time waiting for him to get back on the track and encouraging him as well as laying him down a couple of times on the track. It was about 400 yards, the last 100 he was pretty focused and more what I expect and like to see. There was a lot more focus on the blood the where I had walked, I don't think there was any scent left from me by the time I did the track.


400 yards, on bare ice, would seem like a big task for a "first track". Can I ask why you chose bare ice on a lake?
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby bwana_don » Fri Mar 18, 2016 9:22 pm

Duckdon wrote:
bwana_don wrote:Did my first track today on bare ice on a lake today. Very different. First thing, the dog was not use to bare ice, made him much slower than usual because of trying to keep his footing. He did not want to concentrate on the track at first like he does in the woods - lots of other new smells. I spent a lot of time waiting for him to get back on the track and encouraging him as well as laying him down a couple of times on the track. It was about 400 yards, the last 100 he was pretty focused and more what I expect and like to see. There was a lot more focus on the blood the where I had walked, I don't think there was any scent left from me by the time I did the track.


400 yards, on bare ice, would seem like a big task for a "first track". Can I ask why you chose bare ice on a lake?
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That was track number 22, first-track on bare ice, he had been making tracks in the snow look too easy - needed a challenge and wanted see what he would do with out my foot prints. It had been a couple of months since there had been bare ground. Now I am kind of interested in variable surface tracking.
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby bwana_don » Fri Mar 18, 2016 9:22 pm

Duckdon wrote:
bwana_don wrote:Did my first track today on bare ice on a lake today. Very different. First thing, the dog was not use to bare ice, made him much slower than usual because of trying to keep his footing. He did not want to concentrate on the track at first like he does in the woods - lots of other new smells. I spent a lot of time waiting for him to get back on the track and encouraging him as well as laying him down a couple of times on the track. It was about 400 yards, the last 100 he was pretty focused and more what I expect and like to see. There was a lot more focus on the blood the where I had walked, I don't think there was any scent left from me by the time I did the track.


400 yards, on bare ice, would seem like a big task for a "first track". Can I ask why you chose bare ice on a lake?
Don and Crew


That was track number 22, first-track on bare ice, he had been making tracks in the snow look too easy - needed a challenge and wanted see what he would do with out my foot prints. It had been a couple of months since there had been bare ground. Now I am kind of interested in variable surface tracking.
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby Duckdon » Sat Mar 19, 2016 8:37 am

bwana_don wrote:
Duckdon wrote:
bwana_don wrote:Did my first track today on bare ice on a lake today. Very different. First thing, the dog was not use to bare ice, made him much slower than usual because of trying to keep his footing. He did not want to concentrate on the track at first like he does in the woods - lots of other new smells. I spent a lot of time waiting for him to get back on the track and encouraging him as well as laying him down a couple of times on the track. It was about 400 yards, the last 100 he was pretty focused and more what I expect and like to see. There was a lot more focus on the blood the where I had walked, I don't think there was any scent left from me by the time I did the track.


400 yards, on bare ice, would seem like a big task for a "first track". Can I ask why you chose bare ice on a lake?
Don and Crew


That was track number 22, first-track on bare ice, he had been making tracks in the snow look too easy - needed a challenge and wanted see what he would do with out my foot prints. It had been a couple of months since there had been bare ground. Now I am kind of interested in variable surface tracking.


Ok, makes sense now. I took it was your first track ever.
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby woodboro » Sat Apr 16, 2016 7:00 pm

I love the comments as well as challenging our dogs to do a task.
I see nothing wrong with tracks in / on snow.
Point on is if a dog sees a foot print , he is still smelling 'blood'
Ironically I start a dog tracking blood by over laying something he enjoys (a dead rabbit track)
so seeing a foot print(s) as well as human scent isn't a bad thing / point is that he is following.

I learned long ago that supposedly a human scent is like a super highway to a dogs nose. Supposedly a 3 hour time period it dissipates and the blood scent takes over.
I've seen 5 hour tracks following human scent instead of blood.
Any case I've put dogs on 20 hour tracks and learned as much about tracking as did the dog about trusting his nose.
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby 3drahthaars » Sat Apr 16, 2016 7:19 pm

woodboro wrote:I love the comments as well as challenging our dogs to do a task.
I see nothing wrong with tracks in / on snow.
Point on is if a dog sees a foot print , he is still smelling 'blood'
Ironically I start a dog tracking blood by over laying something he enjoys (a dead rabbit track)
so seeing a foot print(s) as well as human scent isn't a bad thing / point is that he is following.

I learned long ago that supposedly a human scent is like a super highway to a dogs nose. Supposedly a 3 hour time period it dissipates and the blood scent takes over.
I've seen 5 hour tracks following human scent instead of blood.
Any case I've put dogs on 20 hour tracks and learned as much about tracking as did the dog about trusting his nose.


I've seen 24-hr tracks where pups followed foot scent instead of blood...

There can be "test" dogs and there can be "hunting" dogs... sometimes bloodtracking separates the latter from the former.

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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby AverageGuy » Sat Apr 16, 2016 8:20 pm

woodboro wrote:I love the comments as well as challenging our dogs to do a task.
I see nothing wrong with tracks in / on snow.
Point on is if a dog sees a foot print , he is still smelling 'blood'
Ironically I start a dog tracking blood by over laying something he enjoys (a dead rabbit track)
so seeing a foot print(s) as well as human scent isn't a bad thing / point is that he is following.

I learned long ago that supposedly a human scent is like a super highway to a dogs nose. Supposedly a 3 hour time period it dissipates and the blood scent takes over.
I've seen 5 hour tracks following human scent instead of blood.
Any case I've put dogs on 20 hour tracks and learned as much about tracking as did the dog about trusting his nose.


Working human scent is ok when first starting out. I am sure they smell both. But assuming the objective is to train a dog that will recover wounded game vs run a hunt test, the dog will eventually need to track blood only. I have observed my dogs working my foot scent where I searched for sign/blood prior to bringing the dog in on the track. Did not result in failure but it is also is not helpful to recovering the game and only delayed the dog in settling into the task at hand. So I do everything in my power to minimize human scent when training. Ultimately it takes real blood tracking opportunities to train the dog.
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby woodboro » Mon Apr 18, 2016 8:51 am

how many hours do you consider real blood tracking experience ?
After all , other than real hunt situations this thread is referencing training to track blood.

Another point to consider, in a hunting situation an animal that has been wounded, may stop dripping blood , and would require a dog that tracks to follow the injured
animal without blood. :wink:
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby AverageGuy » Mon Apr 18, 2016 10:24 am

Actually the original post that I responded to some time ago did not specify if the training effort was for a test or actually recovering animals. Of course the two are related at least at the outset and process of training the dog.

When I used the phrase real blood tracking opportunities I meant recovering wounded animals. In which case there will not be human foot scent to follow whether the animal is bleeding visibly or not, and a dog which has been relying heavily on the trainer's foot scent may struggle because of it. Wounded animals have puncture wounds which will leave scent molecules from the wound, whether blood is visible to our eye or not the dog gets scent to work from. And yes there is also the foot scent of the wounded animal. Until dogs can talk we humans are only speculating as to what scent the dog is actually tracking. But unless the hunter has walked down the entire track prior to bringing in the dog, as they do when training, there will be no human foot scent to key in on. My point was dogs need to experience this to complete their training and become reliable at recovering wounded game.

Did not understand your first question.
Last edited by AverageGuy on Mon Apr 18, 2016 10:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Thoughts on Blood Track Training in Snow

Postby 3drahthaars » Mon Apr 18, 2016 10:36 am

woodboro wrote:how many hours do you consider real blood tracking experience ?
After all , other than real hunt situations this thread is referencing training to track blood.

Another point to consider, in a hunting situation an animal that has been wounded, may stop dripping blood , and would require a dog that tracks to follow the injured
animal without blood. :wink:


To be honest, I consider a real deer to be a "real blood tracking experience"... I know of a "renown expert" blood tracker who cussed out a friend and his young son for disturbing the track so much his dog couldn't follow it. A German friend said at a blood tracking seminar that routinely, even in Germany hunters screw around looking for animals before calling him in with his Teckel. So, his opinion is that there are "test" dogs and there are real tracking dogs...

For the situation you describe, the JGHV has the Fahrentenshue (sp?) test. But, even then 3 judges also walk track... getting back to my original answer of a "real" wounded deer. The dogs that I saw pass the Fahrentenshue test had about 15 real recovered deer each to their credit and zero "test track" training... they nailed it!

In my opinion, the VGP 5hr blood track is an obedience exercise... not much different than the drags.

And, this raises the discussion about how critical the rabbit/hare track is... It is very critical! Because, it indicates the toolset for a "tracking" dog that naturally has the aptitude for and the desire to track...

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