Get Cracking with Tracking

A programme for pet dog owners who are interested in learning about tracking with their dog. Tracking is an activity reliant on the olfactory skill of dogs which goes better when handlers learn how to join in unobtrusively.


Get Cracking with Tracking is a Dogtaggs programme designed to result in quality tracking from behaviourally minded techniques. This programme is taught from the perspective of human movement with focus on somatosensory sensation.

The aim of the teaching approach is mindful behaviour in handlers. Mindful handling creates an environment which empowers dogs to exercise their own agency.

Agency in this case means that the dog perceives itself as in charge of the goal of solving the problem presented by a track.

Giving dogs an opportunity to exercise control over their lives whilst tracking means that: the track will be completed in the most efficient means-end way possible. The sense of enablement is good for the dog s/he has a chance to monitor the environment by themselves, selecting their own course of action. As dogs choose to investigate and follow the track, abandoning other behaviour, so the dog is the architect of his/her own situational learning. This is a firm foundation for emotional behaviour change.

Mindful handling creates an environment which empowers people to experience a new dimension of the relationship with their dog.

Relationship means the way in which handlers and their dogs feel and behave towards each other. By teaching handlers to concentrate on the somatosensory sensation experienced as they learn non-invasive handling of the line, the dogs agency is preserved. Consequently, as they track together, the line becomes a channel through which the dog can effectively communicate. By learning to feel and respond the handler introduces predictable behaviour to the relationship. Reliability in the ability of each party develops, this is usually called trust. This too is a firm foundation for emotional behaviour change.

Get Cracking with Tracking is founded on 3 x two day workshops which progress through a series of drills and exercises to help participants isolate and experience different aspects of touch, balance and proprioception. These are the skill areas that make for great handling of the tracking line. Coincidentally, the positive experience of these sensations reconstructs to counterbalance negative perceptions associated with previous handling.

It is hoped that the 2022 programme will be underpinned by a regular programme of practice days to support the development of handler proficiency.

Who is Get Cracking with Tracking for? Everything we do at Dogtaggs is totally suitable for the family dog accompanied by one family member. If you’re the partner of a dog that challenges you, this will be good for you. If you find yourself playing ‘catch up’ with the thinking and doing speed of your dog, this will be good for you. If you just want to learn how to do some great tracking. This is for you.

If you’re looking to invest in something to turn around, repackage and pass straight on, this is probably not for you. This work is personal consumption only, the investment is time, reward and practice in your own relationship with your dog, not lift and repeat in someone else's.

Next Workshops:

Title Date Price Book
Get Cracking With Tracking 28 & 29 May, 30 & 31 Jul and 20 & 21 Aug (all 6 days) 28/05/2022 £660.00 SOLD OUT
Get Cracking With Tracking 27 & 28 Aug, 22 & 23 Oct and 26 & 27 Nov (all 6 days) 27/08/2022 £660.00 BOOK
Get Cracking With Tracking 30 & 31 Jan, 6 & 7 Mar and 3 & 4 Apr 2023 (all 6 days) 30/01/2023 £660.00 BOOK