Nancy: (You don't have to be LEO to take the NAPWDA test, you need LEO to sponsor you. There is a Master Trainer on the SCSD team in Charleston who is my sponsor and there is a national event in Charleston area in October.) - Yes I know and would love to go but have no sponsor, and in my mind I would like to train for a test before I take it. If that makes any sense. Which is were most of my frustration is.
(For that certification, the problems are only, I think 1-3 hours but the certification is not as much for SAR where the trails are older than for patrol work. For the NAPWDA cert you need to get that 350 yards up to 1.5 miles but, as you know, the distance is not the real challenge.)
Yea this was a really fresh trail 20 min. but she has done much older and longer ones. My problem here is it's just not enough for me to consider it profieceint. (No Track Layer)
That being said I think thats why I'm so frustrated. I want to see after a year know. How good or bad are we really or give up trailing because of the must have human asset to sort of speak. To have for consistant trailing training. And maybe move into detection because I can do it more on a consistant basis. Since training aids, the dog, myself and places are all I need outside of the normal team training and outside seminars and such. I don't Know[/quote]
She would probably be willing to sponsor you, but you can take the NASAR test without. You have a very nice dog - 1-2 years is not abnormal because we are volunteers and don't have access to do this more full time, in a structured context, as do LE. Maybe some creativity in getting victims. My friend wound up finding locals who routinely jog in the morning and are willing to call her when they finish their run and she trails them to their home (probably easier for a woman to set up than a man) before going to work in the morning. or paying teenagers to hide, etc...heck it is cheaper than gasoline. I abused some of my daughters' boyfriends this way.......("hey go hide for me a few times this week and I will treat you to a movie")
After a solid traling foundation, the airscent should proceed relatively quickly as I think most of the time spent training a first dog in trailing as opposed to jumping right into airscent is learning how to read the dog and resolve issues on lead. IOW building that foundation. With the tools in place a subsequent dog should go much more quickly. The stuff I learned trailing is really helping me with cadaver as I know better how to read a negative, the head snap, the tail, etc. how to know when the dog is distracted by a critter scent, etc.
The cadaver detection STILL requires a 2nd person to work with -- someone who can place your hides where you don't know where they are but who knows where they are. It is amazing how hard it is to hide your own body language and how proficient the dogs can be at picking it up. Same issues with being forced to read the dog on blind problems.
But that is where, at the present time, most of the calls come from....hopefully the cadaver work with open doors for doing live searches and being dispatched for those in an apporpriate timeframe so that trailing and airscent dogs will truly be a useful asset.