Mantrailing

What is Mantrailing?

Mantrailing is teaching your dog to find a person based on their unique scent, very similar to search and rescue dogs, but we do it for fun. Mantrailing harnesses a dog’s natural ability to trail, using their nose and turning it into a fun sport.

We start off showing the dog the “runner” or “missing person” running away with their favourite food or toys. This helps to increase the dog’s motivation to trail for the person. Then we build up to not seeing the person go at all and the dog learning to sniff something the person has left or has touched. We have a specific ritual to start with at Mantrailing UK, using the Kocher method. We use harnesses and trail the dogs on a long line, allowing them to lead us to the missing person. We are building the foundations for the game, so as we progress we start to put our trust in the dogs’ super noses.

It is for all breeds and all behaviour issues, or attitudes. All breeds excel at mantrailing as all dogs have noses, from the smallest Chihuahua to the largest Cane Corso. Obviously more working bred breeds, such as the Visla, Pointer or Spaniel, tend to take to it quicker. But any breed can do it.

All dogs instinctively know how to use their nose, regardless of breed, sex, age, and temperament. Have you ever watched your dog following the trail of a long-gone rabbit? You know the dog will never find it but the thrill of the search is as much fun as finding a rabbit would be!

It’s a natural ability, and it’s an amazing sense we can’t even begin to comprehend. Dogs can actually tell the time from scent, and its direction of travel from its age. Sniffing in dogs has been proven to calm them – it reduces cortisol, the stress hormone, in the blood and helps the dog feel calmer.

How Mantrailing Can Help Your Dog and You

Since mantrailing is all about the sniffing, it can have a huge effect on our dog’s wellbeing through encouraging natural behaviour, helping to build confidence and building a bond between you and your dog. Sniffing is so freeing for a dog, and it’s something we forget about as our sense of smell is so poor. Often when we choose to do training with our dogs it’s about our end goals and how we want them to work something out. With mantrailing, we can’t take control as it is the dog leading the way, nose-first.

It’s the ideal challenge for dogs who are reactive as each dog is worked individually away from other dogs or only trail people the dog is comfortable with to start with. Once they start to progress it becomes rewarding for the dog to approach new people for a prize. It can turn a fearful aggressive dog into a confident dog in only a few trails. It has such a huge impact on them. Your dog’s happiness and safety are always a priority, and part of mantrailing is about making it fun for the dog.

When the dogs are engaging their nose to find the person, we are there to cheer them on. Putting their nose to the ground is natural and instinctive. By giving them an outlet for their sniffing, with a predictable reward at the end that they get time after time, you are not only tapping into the natural and comforting sequence of hunting, but you are providing a win every time.

It’s the ideal challenge for dogs who are reactive as each dog is worked individually away from other dogs or only trail people the dog is comfortable with to start with. Once they start to progress it becomes rewarding for the dog to approach new people for a prize. It can turn a fearful aggressive dog into a confident dog in only a few trails. It has such a huge impact on them. Your dog’s happiness and safety are always a priority, and part of mantrailing is about making it fun for the dog.

“Sniffing in dogs has been proven to calm them, it reduces cortisol, the stress hormone, in the blood and helps the dog feel calmer.”

When the dogs are engaging their nose to find the person, we are there to cheer them on. Putting their nose to the ground is natural and instinctive. By giving them an outlet for their sniffing, with a predictable reward at the end that they get time after time, you are not only tapping into the natural and comforting sequence of hunting, but you are providing a win every time.

The dog’s confidence skyrockets and you can see dogs that were once very afraid to approach a person suddenly jump at the chance to hunt one out.

We aren’t teaching them anything new with mantrailing, all dogs can sniff. We are harnessing their natural talent.

It’s all about the reward at the end. The missing person has run off with their food or toy, and we encourage the use of wet foods at the end of the trail to further help the dogs release endorphins via licking. With toys, we can create a feeling of happiness by playing tug or producing the favourite ball at the end of the trail.

The dogs always work on a lead, so it’s a fantastic sport for dogs whose recall needs improving or dogs in need of low impact exercise due to age or injuries. It is especially good for puppies as it is mentally tiring more than physically, and it has little impact on their joints as they grow. It is one of the few sports you can start from as soon as the puppy has had its first vaccinations.

It’s a real boost for us as well, as often dogs that might have been kicked out of classes for being too vocal or unruly excel at mantrailing. They can harness that excitement and brainpower towards something that makes them truly happy on a mental level.

It is a real buzz watching dogs learn to find people and learning to read your dog. You start to understand it on an intimate level, watching their head turns and subtle body changes that say they’ve got the trail or lost it. Trailing is individual to each dog, and we as their owners need to learn to understand them, giving subtle help when needed or sitting back and letting them work it out.

Working as a team to get to the end goal is a great way to build a stronger bond. We are putting our trust in our dog and allowing them free reign to discover where the person may be, trusting them not to steer us wrong or get distracted by another scent. It’s good for us to let go of perfection and allow our dogs to lead the charge for once.

There is no pressure to the trail, you can do it as often or as little as you want. With Mantrailing UK there is an opportunity to work towards three levels of skill and gain awards in them. Or you can just enjoy trailing your dog.

How to get started - Where to find your nearest instructor

To get started in mantrailing with Mantrailing UK you need to find your nearest instructor at www.mantrailinguk.com/find-an-instructor and attend an introduction course near you. The introduction course teaches you and your dog about the game, leaving you with a dog that has started the early beginnings of trailing and you hopefully hooked on the sport.

Each Mantrailing UK Instructor is trained to help you find the best way to make mantrailing fun for your dog.

All you need to get started is a dog and some enthusiasm. Ideally, your dog would have a harness and long line to start off trailing, which don’t need to be fancy. But many instructors can lend you equipment to try to see what’s best for you and your dog.

Be ready to be a missing person for another dog on the introduction. We want to get as many people involved as possible, so family members are also welcome on many introduction sessions.

There are other mantrailing courses and associations in the UK but Mantrailing UK is the largest in the UK currently and we are expanding our instructor numbers every year to cover the whole of the UK. If there isn’t an instructor near you currently, there hopefully will be soon.

If you go with other organisations or an independent trainer then make sure they have experience trailing, and find out what methods they use. All for fun mantrailing should be force-free and about the fun. Mantrailing UK does not train operational dogs.

Where to find our expert!

Trailing K9’s was set up to get more people into mantrailing with their dog, as it is one of the most exciting new sports in the UK. Kathryn started her trailing journey in 2019 and has never looked back.

For More Information: www.trailingk9s.com

Download the K9 app for FREE!

Check out some of our related articles!

Cats and Dogs

In 2019, Cats Protection rehomed 41,000 cats and the Dogs Trust rehomed 11,790 dogs. That’s a lot of pets potentially moving into the home of another! Each pet is an individual, so how can we make the transition easier for them?

Read More »

Dogs and Children

Hearing your dog growl at your child is a heart stopping moment for any parent. Your reaction may well be to panic, punish the dog and then start to consider options like re-homing. But stop…breathe…it may not be as bad as you think.

Read More »

Trailing K9’s was set up to get more people into mantrailing with their dog, as it is one of the most exciting new sports in the UK. Kathryn started her trailing journey in 2019 and has never looked back.

For More Information: www.trailingk9s.com

Check out some of our related articles!

Enrichment

Enrichment is defined as ‘something you add to your dog’s environment that they choose to interact with and that has a positive impact on their psychological or physical well being.’

Read More »

Canicross Equipment

It is your responsibility to make sure that your dog is in the most suitable harness which allows your dog the best range of movement to suit their shape and running style.

Read More »

Download the K9 app for FREE!

Download the app for FREE to read more great articles!

Sign-up to the K9 Nation newsletter to get website access to our collection of articles and find out first when new articles are added!

Privacy Policy

Protecting your data is very important to K9Nation Limited (“K9Nation”, “us”, “our” or “we”). This policy, together with our Terms and  conditions, sets out the basis on which any personal data we collect from you, or that you provide to us, will be processed by K9Nation.

It applies to your use of the website www.K9Nation.uk, the associated ‘K9Nation’ mobile application (together, the “Platform”), all communications between you and us and (unless expressly provided otherwise) all agreements entered into between you and us which involve the collection by, or disclosure to, us of personal data.

Information we may collect about you.

We may collect and process the following data about you:

  • information that you provide by filling in forms on the Platform. This includes information you provide at the time of registering (including, but not limited to, your name, telephone number, address and email address) or at any subsequent point;
  • if you contact us, we may keep a record of that correspondence;
  • your responses to surveys you choose to complete on the Platform from time to time;
  • details of any photographs, comments, posts, or other information you post on the Platform;
  • device-specific information (such as your hardware model, operating system version, unique device identifiers, and mobile network information); and
  • details of your visits to the Platform (such as the full Uniform Resource Locators (URL) clickstream to, through and from the Platform (including date and time); page response times; page interaction information (such as scrolling, clicks, and mouse-overs), and methods used to browse away from the Platform).

Information we may collect about others.

We may collect and process data about others that you provide us with, including (but not limited to) information that you provide by filling in forms on the Platform. You represent and warrant to us that you have obtained the express consent from the individuals whose data you provide us with.

For the avoidance of any doubt, any reference in this privacy policy to your data shall include data about other individuals that you have provided us with.

IP Addresses

We may collect information about your computer, including where available your IP address, operating system and browser type, for system administration. This is statistical information about our users’ browsing actions and patterns, and may be linked to an individual user through other information that is held by us or publically available.

Cookie Policy

The Platform uses cookies to distinguish you from other users. This helps us provide you with a good experience when you use the Platform and also allows us to improve the Platform.

Please note that it is possible to disable cookies being stored on your computer by changing your browser settings. However, the Platform may not perform properly or some features may not be available to you if you disable cookies.

For detailed information on the cookies we use and the purposes for which we use them see our cookie policy.

Where we store your personal information.

The data that we collect about you may be transferred to, and stored at, a destination outside the European Economic Area (“EEA”), including the USA. It may also be processed by staff operating outside the EEA who work for us or for one of our service providers. By submitting your personal data, you agree to this transfer, storing and processing.

Your passwords are stored in K9Nation’s database in encrypted form. We do not disclose your account details, postal or email addresses to anyone except when legally required to do so. We will only hold your information for as long as is necessary for the purpose we collect it for, or for such additional time as may be required by law or any relevant regulatory body.

Security

Sensitive information between your browser and the Platform is transferred in encrypted form using Secure Socket Layer (SSL). When transmitting sensitive information, you should always make sure that your browser can validate the Platform’s certificate. It is your responsibility to keep your password secure.

Unfortunately, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although K9Nation will do its best to protect your personal data, we cannot guarantee the security of your data transmitted to the Platform, any transmission is at your own risk. Once we have received your information, we will use strict procedures and security features to try and prevent any unauthorised access.

How we use your information.

We use information held about you (and information about others) in the following ways:

  • to provide you with our services;
  • to reply to requests for information or any other kind of request as indicated by your correspondence;
  • to provide you with information about other goods and services we offer that are similar to those you have already purchased or enquired about;
  • to allow you to participate in interactive features of the Platform when you choose to do so, including interaction with external social networks and platforms;
  • to improve the Platform and ensure the content on the Platform is presented in the most effective manner for you and your computer or mobile device;
  • to administer our Platform and for internal operations ,including troubleshooting, data analysis, testing, research, statistical and survey purposes;
  • to measure or understand the effectiveness of advertising served to you on the Platform; and
  • to notify you about changes to our service, the Platform.

Disclosure of your information

We may disclose your personal information to any business partner, sub-contractor or supplier of K9Nation for the performance of any contract we enter into with you, and/or a member of our group.

We may also disclose your personal information to third parties:

  • in the event that we sell or buy any business or assets, in which case we may disclose your personal data to the prospective seller or buyer of such business or assets;
  • if K9Nation or substantially all of its assets are acquired by a third party, in which case personal data held by us about our customers will be one of the transferred assets;
  • in order to enforce the Terms and Conditions and any other agreement between you and us; or
  • if we are under a duty to disclose or share your personal data in order to comply with any legal obligation or to protect the rights, property, or safety of K9Nation, our customers, or others. This includes exchanging information with other companies and organisations.

Marketing communications and your rights

By registering for an account on the Platform, you give your permission for us to use your personal data for marketing purposes in relation to our products and services. You have the right to ask us not to process your personal data by contacting us.

The Data Protection Act 1998 gives you the right to access information held about you by submitting a request in accordance with the act and is subject to a £10 administrative fee. All such requests should be sent via our contact form.

Changes to this policy

Any changes we make to our privacy policy in the future will be posted on this page, and where appropriate, notified to you by email.

Questions, comments and requests regarding this privacy policy are welcome and should be addressed via our email address: hello@k9nation.dog

Cookie Policy

We use cookies and similar tools on our website, www.K9Nation.uk, and the associated ‘K9Nation’ mobile application (together, the “Platform”) to improve their performance and enhance your user experience. This policy explains how we do that.

What are cookies?

Cookies are small text files which a website may put on your computer or mobile device when you first visit a site or page. The cookie will help the website, or another website, to recognise your device the next time you visit. We use the term “cookies” in this policy to refer to all files that collect
information in this way.

There are many functions cookies serve. For example, they can help us to remember your username and preferences, analyse how well the website is performing, or even allow us to recommend content we believe will be most relevant to you.

Certain cookies contain personal information – for example, if you click to “remember me” when logging in, a cookie will store your user identifier. Most cookies will not collect information that identifies you, but will instead collect more general information such as how users arrive at and use the website.

The cookies we use.

At the date of the last update of this Cookie Policy, the list below represents a comprehensive list of all cookies set on the Platform, but please note that the cookies we use are subject to fairly frequent change. The purposes of the cookies in use, as described below will not change without this policy being updated. However we may not update this policy every time the identity of a particular cookie or the party setting the cookie changes.

 

Category: Strictly necessary

Party: BorrowMyDoggy.com

Purpose: BorrowMyDoggy uses cookies to enable the essential features of the website, such as the navigation system, signing up for the service, subscribing, verifying and messaging.

 

Category: Analytical /  Performance

Parties: Amplitude, Hotjar, Segment, Google Analytics, Optimizely, Improvely

Purpose: These cookies are used to analyse data from users’ visits in order to help us improve the service or create and analyse content tests to allow us to optimise the experience for future users.

 

Category: Functionality

Party: BorrowMyDoggy.com

Purpose: BorrowMyDoggy uses functionality cookies to improve the experience for its users. For example, to save users from having to remember their username, we use a cookie to remember this information.

 

Category: Advertising

Parties: Google Adwords, Facebook, DoubleClick, Affiliate Window, Improvely

Purpose: BorrowMyDoggy uses paid advertising in order to recruit new customers. These paid advertising channels will set cookies so that we can measure the effectiveness of this advertising.

Can you block cookies?

It is possible to block cookies, although remember that if you do choose to disable cookies, you may find that certain sections of the Platform do not work properly.

More detail on how businesses use cookies is available at http://www.allaboutcookies.org.

If you have any queries regarding this Cookie Policy please contact our Privacy Officer at hello@k9nation.dog