When searching for a missing person, the dogs work with the person's individual odour. Humans lose over
40,000 skin cells per minute which are decomposed by bacteria, leaving an individual odour trail for
each person, similar to a finger print.

The dog, having been given a scent article used by the person (clothing, keys, hairbrush), then picks up
that individual scent.

Even if a number of days have passed, the dog is able to follow the track of that person whether it be over forest paths, fields, roads or even in the town. The dog works on a long leash and dog and handler work together as a team.
The handler must learn to read his dog's behaviour very well and help him out following the scent in difficult
situations such as cross-roads or large expanses.

Human skin cells are transported by body heat and are exposed to environmental factors such as wind, humidity and temperature fluctuations. Because of this scent particles can be carried over various distances and remain stuck on vegetation or buildings. The tracking dog therefore, works solely with his olfactory senses and does not simply follow footprints.