What is Mantrailing?
Mantrailing is an “art” of following one person’s scent and later identifying that person or the end of the trail. Mantrailing is used to find missing persons in search and rescue operations and in criminal investigations.
Mantrailing combines the amazing ability a dog has to process shed skin cells, and put them in chronological order to move ahead on a trail and the ability to distinguish between individual scents. In the beginning of the trail the dog is scented on a piece of clothing the lost person or other item, that has the scent of that person (scent article) and the dog will follow this individual scent on the trail, which is left there by hairs, dead skin cells and smaller particles that humans shed constantly. Because these rafts and particles are very small, they can also be carried by the wind, which can cause the dog to follow the trail at some distance from the actual path the person has walked, depending on the terrain and weather conditions (wind, rain). Field contamination (scent of others) should not affect the dog’s work. He should be able to trail scents on pavements, streets, grass, water, etc. If there is a good scent article and a point where the person was last seen, a trailing dog can be the fastest way to find the victim.
And…dogs love it, they do it naturally and for them this is the best game around!