Dogs are born to sniff. The area of the canine brain that is devoted to analyzing scent is 40 times greater than that of humans and dogs can identify smells at least 1,000 times better than we can! Whilst we can smell an apple pie, a dog smelling the same odour will distinguish between the smells of the flour, the sugar, the apples and the butter. The dogs’ superior sense of smell comes from 220 million olfactory receptors in their nose. The airflow through their noses is strikingly different to ours, they have one passage for breathing and another for smelling, because of their anatomy, they can move new smells to the olfactory nerves whilst old smells exit via the side slits, the nerves then send the scent to the brain for decoding.
Detection and Training
Once a suitable dog is selected for training, they go into the classroom. All InvictaK9 dogs are reward trained, they work for their ball, which is the centre of their universe. Structured exercises and a positive environment are key in training, the dog needs to associate searching as a positive experience. During early training when they detect the smell that they are being trained for, they are rewarded. As the training progresses, they are rewarded when the correct indication is given i.e. ‘The Sit’ After months of training, along with their handler, they undergo assessment for licensing. This training and assessment will carry on throughout their career to ensure their skills are reliable and up to the industry standard.