When searching at the Detective level, the:
  • team is looking for five to ten hides
  • scent is Birch and/or Anise and/or Clove and/or Cypress
  • official time, between 7 and 15 minutes, shall start when the dog’s nose crosses the start line, or when any part of the handler’s body crosses the start line, whichever is first
  • the dog indicates the finds and the handler calls “Alert”. Official time shall stop when the handler believes all hides have been located and calls “Finish”.

Detective Search Course

The course must span both the interior and exterior of a building or structure. The total search area must be from 2000 to 5000 square feet. Teams may wander in and out of included rooms, and go back and forth between interior and exterior areas when seeking hides.


There should be a total of five to ten hides that can be on, under, or in any object or container, at any height. The target scent may be Birch and/or Anise and/or Clove and/or Cypress. All odors need not be present, and each odor can be used multiple times.

Search Time

The total search time will be determined by the judge and must be between 7 and 15 minutes. There will be no 30 second warning in this class, but handlers can self-time if they wish.


Four to six intentional distractions of any type will be used on the course.

Alert and Finish Calls

The dog must find the target scents and communicate the finds to its handler. The handler must call “Alert” when the dog indicates each find. The handler should call “Finish” when he or she believes all hides have been located for the entire course.

Course Map

After the “Finish” call the handler will be told whether they qualified and be given a course map showing the location of each hide on the course.

The Detective class is open to dogs who have acquired at least one Master title within the Odor Search Division (SCM, SIM, SEM, or SBM).

scentBirch and/or Anise and/or Clove and/or Cypress
# Hides5-10 (unknown)
Time Limit*7-15 min
Distractions3 non-food, food, auditory, visual, human or mimic
Required CallAlert calls & one finish call
Max. Height of HidesAny Height
The judge will set and identify the time limit prior to your search.