Need some advice. Trying to train my dog on blood trails to find a dead, wounded or confirm a miss of a deer. I have an 21 month all black lab, he's very cool. I use him in the beating line and take him stalking and even if I am bias he doesn't put a foot wrong.
Last winter on the does I took him out. He will stay whilst I stalk into a deer and then when I've return to him, a few times I allowed him to find the deer where it had fell or I had moved it a bit for him to find it, which he had no problems in a field or cover. I just pointed to any sign on the ground and said find the deer!
Lately in prep for this winters does I have been trying to up mine and his game. I brought I harness, line, dried a deer skin and saved some blood.
He never wears a lead, never has. When I put the harness on him he thinks it's is the best game ever, too excited to think, so I've stopped trying him in it. I'll get him calmer wearing it around the house and stuff.
So I've laid a simple trail of blood, straight line or put in a dog leg with the deer skin at the end, quite short to start with....10, 20, 30m, left it a couple of hours. So this is my approach, we go for a simple walk, nothing to excite him and once I get to where I know the trail starts I let him find the scent. Each time I do this he knows something is up because he's thinking why are we stopping. I let him wonder about and find the trail which he normally gives me a indication he's found the trail but after a few meters he generally starts quartering and ends up finding the skin without really following the trail. I suspect he can smell the skin and is just trying to find that.
When on a walk he ground scents all the time, but once he thinks he has a job to do he's looking everywhere but the ground.
I guess he if finds it his way that's fine. But I would like to be more controlled and specific with him. It's in him for sure, he has a great nose but need to target him a bit more. Any advice gratefully relieved on how to get him to look at the start of a trail and follow it.
Thanks In advance.