Lesson 2 of 9
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Equipment

Equipment

  • The dog may track either free without a lead or with the lead that is at least 10 m or 33 feet long. It can be longer than that but never shorter, not even by an inch.
  • If dog tracks free, the handler must remain 10 m behind the dog.
  • The judge might measure the length of your lead before or during reporting in. You should double-check it at home to make sure it is compliant.
  • The lead can be attached directly to the fur-saver on the dead setting.
  • The dog may have a short lead up to 2 m or 6 1/2 feet when reporting in and all the way to the setup area. The setup area is at least 2 m away from the start flag.

A chest harness or a Böttger harness can be used. Make sure the backstrap does not go further than the last rib.

  • Lead materials:
    • Ropes or rubberized leads can burn your hands and become uncomfortable for the dog if he gets tangled but they are an option.
    • Leather is extremely long-lasting but pricey and might become slippery when wet.
    • Biothane is a leather alternative. It resists water and ice. Dries very quickly and resists odors.
    • Leads made out of webbing are very popular. Something similar to climbing webbing. It is strong and comfortable in your hands. Just remember to dry it out if you track in rain.
    • Nylon or cotton leads are an option too, test them out and see if you find them comfortable. Be careful that they can shrink slightly.
  • Start flag:
    • Your dog should be used to any color and shape of the flag.
    • A higher level of competition might have metal or plastic decorative flags. Your dog should not be startled by them or try to sniff them.
    • Many clubs use construction or safety flags.

Please do not forget your rubber boots 😀