Dog Tracking Experts (Model Examinations)

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Qualifying Expert

Counsel will attempt to make two qualifications: the dogmaster in the field of interpreting the actions of the dog, and the dog in tracking human scents or drug scents.

Areas of Questioning Comments
  • duration the dogmaster has been member of force / duration the dogmaster has been with dog team / duration the dogmaster has been with <dog>
  • Dogmaster training course / duration / coverings tracking of human scents or drugs
  • prior experience qualified giving evidence in court as dogmaster / prior testimony with current dog
  • dog breed of <dog> / relevance of breed to tracking / ability of breed to track
  • method of tracking / method of communicating
  • whether training is needed / history of training of dog / whether with dogmaster or with others
  • performance on simulated and real cases
  • how dogmaster learns particular communication style of <dog>
  • on-going training / frequency
  • duration <dog> has been tracking / number of investigations used for
  • success rate / false positives

Subject to cross-examination, counsel will then request the dogmaster and dog be qualified as experts.


Areas of Questioning Comments
  • how dogmaster communicates to dog (types of signals)
  • how dog communicates with dogmaster (types of signals)
  • dogs ability to follow scents
  • effects of environment (terrain, climate, obstacles, persons etc) / types of distractors
  • possibility of dog losing scent / reasons
  • possibility of dog catching scent of another track that crosses first track

Tracking Evidence

Areas of Questioning Comments
  • dogmaster responds to request for services / time of request
  • time and location that the dog was deployed (use map)
  • commands or signals communicated to the dog
  • response from the dog / interpretation of the response
  • route traveled during tracking (draw on map)
  • whether there were other people discovered during track
  • further signals given to dog during tracking
  • further signals given from dog during tracking
  • any item(s) or person(s) found / identification of person
  • opinion of relevance of item or person found / signals from dog relevant to discovery
  • what happened to item or person