The purpose of the Tracking Assessment is for the dog and handler to;
1. demonstrate their ability to work happily as a team.
2. follow a track left by a human.
3. locate a small number of articles left on the track and, at the higher levels, locate a hidden person or items of clothing.
4. have an enjoyable and positive experience which encourages them to continue developing their skills.
Eligibility of Dogs for Tracking Assessments
1. Tracking Assessments are open to all dogs including mixed breeds. There is no requirement for dogs to be registered with the Kennel Club.
2. Dogs may enter a Tracking Assessment from 6 months of age (by the date of the Test). There is no upper age limit.
3. No dog suffering from any communicable disease may be entered into a Tracking Assessment. This restriction will also apply to any dog that has been exposed to, or is recovering from, a communicable disease within the 14 days preceding the Tracking Asessment.
4. No dog that is sutured, bandaged or lame may be entered into a Tracking Assessment.
5. Bitches in season will be allowed to enter a Tracking Assessment. If it is a group Tracking Assessment event, the last track of the day should be allocated to this entrant.
1. No dog should be brought to a Tracking Assessment wearing any of the following;
- Electronic / "Shock" collar
- Choke / Check collar
- Pinch / Prong collar.
Any handler using this type of equipment with their dog will not be permitted to continue with the Assessment.
2. Dogs should be microchipped and carry indentification compliant with current UK law. Correctly fitted Half-check collars will be permitted.
3. When tracking, dogs should wear a body harness with tracking line attached to the back. The dog must not be tracked with the line attached to the collar and / or running under its body / through / between its legs.
4. While tracking, the handler may carry a bottle of water for their dog. The water can be offered to the dog as soon as the Tracking Assessment is completed.
5. While tracking, the handler may carry food treats and / or a toy for their dog. The food or toy may be used to reward their dog after an article find and/or when the track is completed. These rewards must not be used to in any way "lure" the dog along the track. If, in the Assessor's opinion, they have been used in this way then the Tracking Team will be deemed "Not Ready".
6. Whilst tracking, the dog must remain attached to its line at all times including whilst it is being offered water and / or rewards.
1. Handlers must be Members of The UK Tracking Dog Association before the date of the Assessment. Those people wishing to be considered for Membership can apply via The UK Tracking Dog Association Facebook group, via email contact to or by completing the Membership application on this website .
2. Handlers under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult to enter a Tracking Assessment.
3. No harsh handling will be permitted at any Tracking Assessment event. Harsh handling will include such behaviours as hitting, "scruffing" and "Alpha-rolling" the dog. Please note, this list is by no means exhaustive.
Any handler found to be in breach of this regulation will face immediate disqualification from the Tracking Assessment and their Membership of the Association will be revoked.
4. The handler does not have to be the owner of the dog they are tracking. This must be indicated on the Tracking Assessment entry form and permission granted by the owner.
5. A dog can be entered into any Tracking Assessment as many times as the Member wishes, (eg; a Dog may hold 3 Novice Tracking Dog awards when only 1 is required for progression) however, a dog may only enter ONE Tracking Assessment per organised Tracking event.
6. If successful, it is the dog that is awarded the Tracking Assessment title rather than the handler or owner.
7. It is the handler's responsibility to keep their dog under proper control at all times when attending a Tracking Assessment. No dog should be off-lead where there is the possibility that it can cause nuisance to other tracking teams or other attendees at the event. Please refer to note below.
8. Handler's / Owner's enter dogs into Tracking Assessments at their own risk. There is an expectation that, at a minimum, they will have third party insurance cover for their dog. By signing the Assessment form you are agreeing to abide by the Terms and Conditions of entry and the rules of the UK Tracking Dog Association contained within this website.
NB; This Association wishes to make all Tracking Assessment events as safe as possible in order that handler's have the confidence to bring their dogs to an event.
1. The UK Tracking Dog Association will hold a list of approved Assessors.
2. Applications for consideration as an Assessor for Tracking Assessments will be drawn from those that;
a) are currently accepted, and acting, as Judges in other tracking related dog sports eg; Working Trials / IPO
b) have expertise in other tracking related fields eg; Behaviour work / Search work
c) have successfully achieved the Qualified UK Tracking Dog award with their dog.
d) Assessors should start by assessing the lowest levels (foundation of Level 1) before progressing to assess Level 2 and work up the scale. Further detail is available from the administration team.
3. The UK Tracking Dog Association reserves the right to decline applications for Assessor roles.
4. Assessors must not conduct a Tracking Assessment for a family or household member, a dog that they own or part-own or a dog that they have regularly handled/trained.
5. It is the responsibility of the Assessor to familiarise themselves with the Tracking Assessment Regulations in order to ensure that the "spirit" in which the Regulations were developed is evident in the Assessment process.