I have recently heard some interesting news from Police K9 that I thought readers might like to know about.
Scent Pictures: Several Police Dog handlers on the Police-K9 list have been discussing the dogs ability to detect mulitple odors. One agency is actually mixing their drug odors, ie, they are combining pouches of marijuanna and meth and cocaine into one package for the dog to detect. This practice is going against the previously accepted views of drug detection training.
Also a new product from the Max Plank Institute in Germany is a single odor which, allegedly, if a dog is trained on it will enable it to locate ANY of the 19,000 available explosives compounds. The product is called Sokks Octogen and is a combination of the explosives odors from the 20 different categories of explosives. If the claims about this product are found to be correct (several Agencies in Europe are already using the product) then it will not only revolutionise the training for Explosives Detector Dogs but will change many long established beliefs about the dogs scenting ability in relation to scent pictures and how the dogs mind views them.
I discovered the information about this product at a recent Bomb Data Seminar I attended here in Australia. Once I passed this information to the members of the Police K9 list I was besieged by requests for further information. I have been researching for our own Explosives Detector Dog program and I am very enthusiastic about this information.
The idea that a dog can be trained on a single composite odor and then indicate to any single odor within the composition goes against the main stream theory that is taught in most government training establishments around the world. I was very sceptical when I first heard the claims about this product but the more I dig, the more I believe the claims to be correct.