Tracking is a sport where the people take the passenger’s seat. The dog is in the lead and is able to confidently do what comes naturally to it, and we must learn to trust in this ability. For some people, trusting the dog and letting it lead are two of the hardest parts of beginning work in tracking.
Historically, dog shows and other related events were developed with a very specific purpose in mind – to select and recognize those dogs with the best breeding characteristics, in order to guarantee the future health, stability and vitality of individual breeds. The practice of dog breeding is dedicated to this purpose, and dog breeders have a responsibility to do what is best for the breeds with which they choose to work.
A well trained SAR dog is a sight to behold. The dog can evenly maneuver the most difficult of terrain with the grace of a mountain goat all the while looking for a trapped or hidden human being. This type of work is often done on the fly, at the drop of the hat, with little advanced warning. It requires a talented dog and a special handler willing to invest the time and effort.