Glossary of terms used on this site

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Agility
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Agility : A character trait which describes the natural (running) speed, surefootedness, and coordination, and the ability of the dog to correct and recover 

Author: Scientific Working Group on Dog and Orthogonal detector Guidelines (SWGDOG)
Air Scent
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Air Scent  (Dog): A dog that searches for the source of human odor. They are typically "Nose Up" when they work, and are usually non-scent-discriminating.

  • Air scent dogs do NOT require a scent article or tracks.
  • No starting point (or Last Known Position) is required.
  • Multiple dogs can work an area, though not at the same time.
  • A dog can work an area that has already been searched by dogs and/or people.

Author: ARDA: American Rescue Dog Association
Back-Chaining
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Back-Chaining : A teaching methodology, where the training of the chained behaviors occurs in reverse order. The final behavior is taught first, and the second-to-last behavior is added and taught next, and so forth.

For example: the very first behavior a back-chained "live find" dog is taught: is to play with new humans (the reward). For a Stay-and-Bark, the second behavior would be to "bark at a stranger" and then play. 

Behavior Chain
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Behavior Chain : a series of learned behaviors, carried out, after one command. 

Blank Search
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Blank Search : A training or certification exercise in which the target odor is not present  

Author: Scientific Working Group on Dog and Orthogonal detector Guidelines (SWGDOG)
Blind
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Blind : A training exercise is considered Blind if the person person searching does not know the location of odor(s), and/or if any are prescent, BUT the accompanying Instructor/Evaluator DOES know.

Change of Behavior
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Change of Behavior (COB): A characteristic pattern of behaviors, as interpreted by the handler, that occurs when the dog detects a trained odor.  

Author: Scientific Working Group on Dog and Orthogonal detector Guidelines (SWGDOG)
Chimney
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Chimney Effect: Warm air rises from the source, cools, then drops a distance away from the source.

 

Diffusion
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Diffusion  (of scent):  the even distribution of air in all directions.

Double Blind
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Double Blind : A training exercise is considered Double Blind if the person person searching does not know the location of odor(s), and/or if any are prescent, AND the accompanying Instructor/Evaluator also does not know. 

Eddying
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Eddying : When flowing air moves along/over a large linear obstacle, like a treeline, and the air curls around the edges and swirls.

 

Fanning Plumes
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Fanning Plumes : When air hodls at the same elevation, without rising or falling. Occurs at night, and in valleys.

Visualize the air like a thermocline.

Fumigating
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Fumigating : When scent from the source disperses evenly, and saturates the area.

For example: a closed room.

 

Laminar Air Flow
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Laminar Air Flow : a straight flow of air without and interference.

LKP
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

LKP  (Last Known Position): the last location of the missing subject, substantiated by evidence or clues. The LKP changes with the discovery of clues/evidence.

 

Author: ERI: Emergency Response International
Looping Scent
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Looping Scent : when scent travels upwards from a source, and settles down away from the source. Occurs with little to no wind at the source.

Author: Linda Warshaw
PLS
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

PLS  (Point Last Seen): a point where a witness actually saw the subject. The PLS is usually the IPP (Initial Planning Point).

 

Author: ERI: Emergency Response International
POA
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

POA  (Probability of Area): The chance that a missing person (or clue) is in the search Area.

 

Author: ERI: Emergency Response International
POD
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

POD  (Probability of Detection): The chance that an object or missing person will be detected if present.

 

Author: ERI: Emergency Response International
Rafts
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Rafts  (skin rafts): dead or dying skins cells that have left a human body. They are composed of 1 or more cells, carry bacteria, and are microscopic. An average human sheds around 40,000 cells each minute.

Scent Cones
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Scent Cones : movement of scent away from subject/source -in the shape of a cone.

Shaping
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Shaping : Building new behavior by selectively reinforcing variations in existing behavior, during the action rather than after completion, to increase or strengthen the behavior in a specific manner or direction.

Author: Karen Pryor
Stimulus
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Stimulus : A change in the environment. Dog Training focuses on discriminative stimuli, which causes a change of state in the dog, causing it to perform a specific behavior. 

 

Author: Karen Pryor
Target Odor
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Target Odor : (aka Source) odors which detector dog are trained to detect. 

Author: Penn Vet Working Dog Center
Temperament
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Temperament : The general consistence with which the animal behaves. 

Author: Penn Vet Working Dog Center
Thermal
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Thermal : Layers of air, separated by temperature (and humidity).

 

Tracking
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Tracking  (Dog): dogs are able to follow a human scent, by following the footsteps. Tracking dogs may also be following the odor of crushed vegetation and soil bacterial action. 

Visualize the dog's Nose Down, working within a few feet of the actual track.

Author: William G. Syrotuck
Trailing
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Trailing  (Dog): dogs are scent specific and require a scent article, with a track.

Visualize the dog's Nose Down and Up, working some distance from the actual footsteps.

Author: William G. Syrotuck
Turbulent Air Flow
Glossaries: K9 SAR Glossary

Turbulent Air Flow : When flowing air hits an obstacle/object and causes airflow chaos.

 

VSRDA Glossary

  • Fanning Plumes
    Fanning Plumes: When air hodls at the same elevation, without rising or falling. Occurs at night, and in valleys. Visualize the air like a thermocline.
  • Fumigating
    Fumigating: When scent from the source disperses evenly, and saturates the area. For example: a closed room.