top of page


Beginner's welcome.  We'll help introduce your dog to scents and searching and can help you advance through all the levels and search types. 

About Nosework

K9Cation Scent Work 

Instructor: David Stanford


    Welcome to K9Cation’s Scent Work Class!  Scent Work is a fun and different way to interact and strengthen the bond with your dog.  Every dog is capable of doing well in scentwork, regardless of breed or background.  All you need is something for the dog to find, a bit of guidance from you, and you’re both off and running on your new adventure!


    Dogs can smell from 1,000 up to 10,000 times better than humans.  They have over 100 million sensory receptor sites in their nasal cavity, while humans have only about 6 million.  The part of the brain devoted to scent in a dog is also about 40 times larger than it is in humans.  Dogs rely on smell so much that a blind dog will adapt to loss of vision far better than a human will.  They definitely view the world much differently than we do!




  1. Show the handler and their dog how to start a search.

  2. Learn how scent works.

  3. Teach the dog to search for an object at ground level, head level, and above head level.

  4. Show the handler how to properly handle the dog while searching.

  5. Learn the signals a dog may use to indicate they have found the source of the scent that is being searched for.

  6. Teach the dog how to signal they have found the source of the scent (if the handler wishes to do this).

  7. Learn to search containers, interior rooms, outside areas, vehicles, and buried objects.

  8. For those interested in trialing, we will discuss various rules of NACSW (National Association of Canine Scent Work), AKC (American Kennel Club), UKC (United Kennel Club), and USCSS (United States Canine Scent Sports).


    The following list is what you will need when you come to class

  1. A can do attitude and readiness to learn and have fun!

  2. Lots of high value treats that your dog will do anything for!

  3. A minimum 6 foot long leash.

  4. If you wish to use a harness, they are highly recommended but not necessary.

  5. A dog treat pouch to store your dogs favorite treats

  6. A crate is very highly recommended.  If you don’t have a crate, you may put your dog in your car between runs.  Dogs are not to interact during class.

  7. If you have a reactive dog, bring a bandana or some other way to mark your dog as reactive.  Red bandanas work great!  I use a red bandana for my German Shepherd.  Scentwork is a great sport for reactive dogs, we just need to know who they are to give them the space they need!


    A bit about myself.  I’ve been teaching science at the middle school and high school level for 25 years.  I currently teach 8th grade science.  I own a 7 ½ year old German Shepherd named Peyton and a 12 year old Chihuahua named Gizmo.  I have done a lot of work and trialing with Peyton.  He holds many titles and certificates including AKC Obedience, AKC Class C and Class D herding, AKC Achiever Dog, AKC CGC, AKC Farm Dog Certification, UKC Obedience, IABCA National and International Conformation Champion, AHBA Large Flock, Barn Hunt, and passed his NACSW ORT in birch, clove and anise.  Gizmo is also trained on birch and does a pretty good job finding it!

bottom of page