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Saturday, August 31, 2013

A male dachshund puppy available to a blood tracking home

Vern Hansen from Michigan has one male puppy available from his last litter. The sire is Chuck Collier's Moose (FC Nurmi von Moosbach-Zuzelek). Moose is the dog we bred, and he is a sire of our S- and T-puppies. A dam of this litter goes back to our bloodlines too. Vern's number is 906-226-8638, e-mail

Friday, August 30, 2013

Remi and Justin, a blood tracking team from Utah, recover a mule buck

We are happy to report that Remi (Remy von Moosbach-Zuzelek) from Utah recovered his first mule buck of the season. Justin Richins sent us a really nice e-mail with a quote from his client (slightly edited): "Anyway, Justin, thank you so much for interrupting your day to help me. I am leaving donation for all you do with Remy. Please buy him a big standing prime rib bone-in roast, cook it rare and hand it to him for me! Or eat if for dinner with your family and just throw Remy a bone. As I said to you earlier in the sagebrush, this outfit you guys are running, from the people, to the lodge, to the guides to this amazing ranch….is absolutely the best I have ever seen, and I have seen some great ones. Keep up the great work until I get back."

"It took Remi about 1 min to lock on, then its was an easy short track for the liver/stomach shot mule deer. We ran the trail during the 85 degree heat of the day around 4 pm and the deer was shot early in the morning. We had a little heavy cross wind and when Remi picked his head up high in the air I knew the dead buck was close."

Justin's website:

Sunday, August 25, 2013

A Kentucky trophy buck recovered by Joe Mason and his wirehaired dachshund Shome

Shome gets the first buck of the season and what a buck it is!

Yesterday we received this letter from Shome's owner Joe Mason. BTW, Shome is a two year-old littermate of our Sky.

Great day for Shome and me. I am so excited. My granddaughter's husband has a high fence hunting club in our county. I don't know if it is this way nationally or not but in KY once you get the permit from the state to run a high fence club you set your own laws as far as when and how you hunt. He has had a few pay hunters come in already.
He called me this morning about 11:00 and said he had a hunter shoot a 200" deer late yesterday and they couldn't find it and wanted to know if I would bring Shome down and try. It was about a 150 yd. shot and it was so late they couldn't tell where the deer was hit and were only able to find one little area of blood about 40 yds from where the deer had been standing.

Well it was 84 degrees and the trail was going to be 16 hrs old by the time I could get there. I told Marlene I probably didn't have a Chinamans chance but I wanted to work Shome anyway so I was going. I tried to start him at the spot where they thought the deer was standing and didn't seem to have much luck so I picked him up and carried him to where the little bit of blood was that they had found. Bingo. I was holding the leash and I was sure he was tracking. In about 30 yds I saw a little more blood and that sure made me feel good.
After another 40-50 yds he went through some junk to where I just had to let go of the rope and he was gone. Almost as soon as I had let go of the leash I looked down and saw 2 drops of blood on a leaf on a vine so I knew he was still tracking. I use a bell on his collar and just within a minute he was out of hearing range. I began to blow my whistle and call but just like the day I lost him he didn't come back. After a few minutes of calling we heard him barking way back behind us. I first thought he had circled back looking for me. I blew my whistle and called a few more times but we could tell he wasn't coming toward us. Sam asked me if I thought he had tracked the deer back and had found him. I told him I didn't know but I was going back to see what was going on.
It sounded like he was back where we had left his vehicle. When I got back there he wasn't there and the barking was out in a big corn field that ran parallel to the woods. I got really excited then because I knew he was barking at something down out there. When I got to him there was the deer and Shome was having a ball. The deer was still alive but couldn't get up. I don't know if he would have barked had the deer been dead or not. What do you think? If he hadn't been barking or if he had come back to me when I was calling we would never have found the deer. After today I am definitely buying a GPS collar.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Five more weeks to our hunting season!

Today John and I went to get our hunting licenses and doe permits. We did not get any doe permits but saw that this picture is being used by our Town Supervisor as his computer screen saver. It shows John and Tommy, who recovered the deer during last hunting season. It made our morning!

Also today a friend of ours e-mailed us this great picture of a bear taken by his trail camera just few days ago. The picture was taken no more than a mile from our house!
We are in the Southern Zone (4H) of NY so our hunting season starts on October 1.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Sky's second litter

Our Sky's second litter was born three days ago, on August 19. Congratulations to "Meggie" FC Marguerite Vom Jagerhugel and her owner Susanne Hamilton, a close friend of ours from Maine, on three healthy boys: Archer, Arrow and Ajax. We are looking forward to seeing their work in the field! All the pups are spoken for.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

How to take good pictures of tracking dogs with recovered big game

Compiled by Jolanta Jeanneney

At the 2011 United Blood Trackers Trackfest at Pocahontas I had a short presentation about how you can improve your skills allowing you to take better pictures during tracking and hunting season. What follows is a summary of this powerpoint talk. 

A good visual presentation has become even more important in the last few years. It is not a secret that with a growing popularity of social media, more and more people communicate visually. Pictures and videos are omnipresent.  

And let's face it, if you have recovered a wounded deer and you are proud of your dog and your own effort, nothing is going to preserve you memory better than a good picture that you can share with others.

So, if you'd like your picture to look like this 

and not like the one below, read on. Feel free to share your own advice through comments.

Choose your camera wisely

  • Don’t count on your cell phone to take good pictures under difficult conditions
  • A small point-and-shoot camera should be just fine.
  • Don’t be too concerned about  a lot of megapixels! You do not need a huge number of megapixels unless you are planning to do a large format printing. For example a 14 megapixel camera will take a 4320 x 3240 picture at a full resolution. If you printed at the resolution of 200 dpi, this would give you a picture over 20 inches long. Most likely you will not be pursuing large formats like this. Magazines usually require pictures at the 300 dpi resolution, and for 5  by 7 inch picture, you'd need just 1500 x 2100 pixels. To get a really nice print 8”x10” at the 300 dpi your file needs to be 2400 x 3000 pixels, easily achieved with a 7 megapixel camera. So, the bottom line is that you do not need a camera with a very high number of pixels, and more is not necessarily better.
  • Good performance in low light situations and decent flash needed
  • Rugged design
  • You do not have to spend a fortune to get good pictures!
  • Reviews of cameras are available at  or
  • Know your camera and practice in advance!

Areas Of Concern:


  • Take time to compose the shot
  • If possible, pick the uniform background
  • Get close to the subject, fill the frame
  • Make sure you are not cutting off heads, feet, etc
  • Remove branches obscuring a clear view of deer, dog, people
  • Take multiple shots from various angles
  • Make sure that people’s clothing is OK
  • Check the dog’s position, hide the leash
  • Position recovered game in a natural pose, fold the legs underneath or set it up on its belly.
  • Look at the deer or dog, don’t look straight into the camera
  • Take shots of various combinations
    1. hunter with deer,
    2. dog with deer,
    3. handler, dog and deer
    4. hunter, deer, handler, dog
  • Experiment with different depth of field. Try a “portrait” setting to make background not as sharp as main objects.

Avoid too much gore
  • Clean up the animal, wash blood off
  • No animal tongue hanging out
  • Pick the best side (exit holes are messier than entrance holes)
  • Cover wound hole with a leaf or two


  • Early morning or late afternoon diffused light works the best
  • Avoid too much contrast, take few shots with flash (fill flash)
  • Use anti-red eye flash feature
  • Avoid photographer’s shadow
  • Take hats off or at least raise the brim so as not to create a strong shadow on the face.
Other Tips

  • Take few pictures of the animal exactly as you have found it – showing everything.  It may come in handy for determining something you wish you knew later.  Especially if you plan on entering the animal in a record book.
  • Every time you save a Jpeg file, you lose resolution. So don’t save the image every time you look at it. You can save photos in other formats (tiff, png) that are not impacted by this, but they may take up more memory.
  • Keep your image files organized well.
  • Get decent software like Adobe Photoshop Elements for editing and improving your images. Learn how to use it.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Hanoverian Bloodhound (Rouge du Hanovre) in Quebec

The Hanoverian Bloodhound or Hanover Bloodhound is a German breed specializing in tracking wounded big game. In German the breed is called Hannoversche Schweißhund, in French  Rouge du Hanovre.  These dogs have the same medieval ancestry as the American Bloodhound. They are noted for their great scenting ability and their calm, focused tracking style. The smaller, lighter Bavarian Mountain Bloodhound was developed from the Hanoverian as a tracking dog for rough mountain terrain. There are very few Hanoverians working in North America.

A big thank you to Yves Martineau from Quebec, Canada, for the pictures.

Splendid Quebec whitetail found by Yves Martineau and his Hanoverian Bloodhound.
Chevreuil québecois magnifique trouvé par Yves Martineau et son rouge du Hanovre.

Yves  Martineau’s Hanover Bloodhound in Quebec winter.
Rouge d’hanovre d’Yves Martineau en hiver québecois.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Should blood be used in training dogs to track wounded big game?

By John Jeanneney

Recently this inquiry has come in "My friend and I practice with our dogs once per week on blood tracks. Now I have some people telling me that you should never use blood. What are your thoughts?"  

And then we read on Facebook this statement  "Blood is on the inside of the body and contains no scent. Blood has an odor of Iron, but no scent until it is exposed to the skin. Entirely too much emphasis is being placed on Blood training, when you should be practicing scent training. Many good dogs are being confused by handlers and trainers using blood as a training tool."

Blood is not all that important in tracking real deer. I wish that they didn’t call it blood tracking. Still blood is one of the scents that a dog tracks naturally, and yes blood has scent! I train puppies in the early stages on deer blood that I dip from the chest cavities of the deer that I find. This is not blood that has flowed over the skin of the deer. This blood has plenty of scent and ten week old pups follow it with ease, and they learn to love it. It is a better motivator in the early stages of training than a dragged deer leg. At the end of the blood trails I like to have a piece of deer skin and pieces of liver and heart as a reward.

Speaking of deer legs, the main scent that they produce comes from the interdigital gland between the cloves of each foot. When a deer walks waxy particles from the glands are puffed out onto the ground, and they hold up very well for 24 hours. These interdigital glands have an individual scent for each deer, and they are much more important, over time, than the skin particles that come down from the body of the deer. The tarsal glands are also important, but in my experience they are not as individual as the interdigital, particularly with bucks during the rut.

These German scent shoes are available from the United Blood Trackers at 
The favorite advanced training device in Europe is the scent shoe. I use these scent shoes myself, and they are a great motivator for dogs who have had some natural work and are getting bored with that “fake blood stuff”. As you can see from the picture the deer foot is held on the scent shoe with hose clamps in the position of a walking deer. I can walk out a trail on dry forest leaves, and the dog can follow after 24 hours if there is no heavy rain.

Note that the tarsal glands on the hocks are not involved and that skin particles are minimal.
When a dog tracks, it puts together in its mind all of the different scents left by the deer. At the hit site there will be blood, hair, interdigital gland scent, and probably some skin particles too. When the visible blood runs out, the dog keeps going on the combination of other scents left by the deer. Personally, I find that it is effective to introduce a puppy to all the scents associated with the deer. I start with liver drags at five or six week, then blood trails, and finally scent shoe trails.

There is more than one good way to train tracking dogs, and some ways that are not so good. I don’t think that we should get hung up on some theory that training with blood is bad. Blood does have scent, and using it in a squeeze bottle it is a quick and convenient way to lay lines for young dogs. It works! Many thousands of tracking dogs have been trained in Europe and North America using big game blood. Originally, I was skeptical about the scent shoe idea, but now I am sold on it as a part of the training procedure.  A few drops of blood, now and then, adds to the attractiveness. And what you place at the end of the line is very important!

The video shows 11-week-old Urho working a 2.5-hour blood line. No scent shoes were used on this line. Urho was started on liver drags at 5-6 weeks, which were followed at 10 weeks by trails laid with deer blood, with a deer skin at the end. Two days ago he worked the line laid with a dragged deer leg, and  he knew that it would lead to something interesting. Training of tracking dogs involves various techniques. Urho's future training will include more advanced blood work and lines laid with scent shoes.