Simek Foundation Nosework


Nose work isn’t rocket science, and it’s easy to enjoy some early success. But to really rock this sport, learning a systematic approach is key.

Class Description

Nosework isn’t rocket science, and it’s easy to enjoy some early success. But to really rock this sport, learning a systematic approach is key. So we’ll start at the beginning, learning how to properly make a hide and handle odor, get intros right, and build value at the source. We’ll progress to leaning discrimination, indication, and the role of extinction. Then it’s time to push by adding distraction, proofing, and adding search cues. All on the path to begin getting your dog ready for his ORT and NW1 titles.

You may want to assemble a kit for class.  You can easily make your own, and there are also pre-made kits available for purchase.  If you choose to make your own, here is a supply list.

Nose Work kit supplies

Q-tips with cardboard sticks, not plastic

Glass jar with metal lid, a cleaned out baby food jar works nicely

Birch oil, here is the one I use:



latex gloves


hide container, I like the ones offered on this site:


The “Hinged Rectangle – 1 oz., 2 3/8″ length, 1 9/16 width rectangular hinged-top” fits nicely in your hand for training and comes with a magnet.


Week 1: 

  • Lecture 1: Overview of Nose Work and what we are training for.
  • Lecture 2: Handling odor and making a hide
  • Training session 1: Introduction to first odor. Choose! First game in NW.
  • Training Session 2: Better Than a Cookie
  • Lecture 3: Tips for successful training sessions.

Week 2:

  • Lecture 1: What is a foundation? Why is this important?
  • Lecture 2: Introduction of Game Boxes
  • Training Session 1: That’s My Box!
  • Training Session 2: I’m Staying here!
  • Lecture 3: Why is operant conditioning such a powerful training method?

Week 3:

  • Lecture 1: What are we looking for next?
  • Training Session 1: Line drill-We need to stop!
  • Training Session 2: Line drill-Hurry please!
  • Lecture 2: Assessing your training program and making training plans

 Week 4:

  • Lecture 1: Using environment to your advantage
  • Training Session 1: Adding distractions to line drills
  • Training Session 2: Distraction from handler
  • Lecture 2: The grading system of distraction training

Week 5:

  • Lecture 1: What is an ORT?
  • Training Session 1: Addition of ORT boxes to training
  • Training Session 2: Line drills adapted to white boxes
  • Lecture 2: Generalizing the training
  • Training Session 3: Introduction of search for odor

Week 6:

  • Lecture 1: Where are you and where are you headed?
  • Lecture 2: Leash handling skills for container work.
  • Training Session 1: Progression of games, setting up a targeted training session.
  • Training Session 2: Introduction of new types of hide containers.
  • Lecture 3: When am I ready to enter an ORT?
  • Training Session 3: Blind ORT trial.


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