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Official Rules & Exercise Descriptions for each Level

Exercise 1-5: Exterior Search

Dog demonstrates they can search and locate a single hide in an outside search area. Handler must show the hide to the camera after rewarding the dog.

Purpose: Demonstrates dog can work outside.

Age of Hide:  Recommend 10 minutes minimum

Number of Hides: 1

Search Area: Exterior area of handlers choice that is minimally 80 sq ft.  Ground surface can be on any exterior surface such as grass, dirt, gravel, outdoor carpet, mulch, etc. Location must be a unique area that is not used in another Level 1 search submission. 

Hide Placement: Handler’s choice

On/Off Leash: On leash

Required Calls: Handler must say “Alert” or raise hand when their dog has communicated they have found target odor. The Alert call must come before rewarding your dog and should be the handler’s first confirmation of their dog finding the hide.”

Exercise set-up: Hide location is handler’s choice and is placed in an outdoor area. Search begins when the handler cues the dog to search. Dog and/or handler must cross the start line. Search ends when the handler signals an “Alert” call. The handler must show the hide to the camera before turning the camera off per one of the options outlined in the overview.

Scoring: Pass/Not yet

Non-qualifiers: Odor paired with food; handler points to hide; dog does not show change in behavior at source; dog exhibits an unproductive indication, scent aids fall out from hide placement, dog retrieves hide, exposed scent aids (not in vessel) placed in search area; dog eliminates during search; search parameters not met;
incorrectly placed hide; incorrect call; Dog is rewarded before handler makes an alert call; Scent vessel not hidden and visible to dog or the human eye; Handler is out of view a majority of the search time. Dog dislodges hide during search.


Video example:

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Additional samples of Level 1, Exercise 5

Sample Videos: