AN ARTICLE ABOUT ARTICLES
As a judge I've been presented with a number of incorrect articles by the tracklayers. Most of the other judges I’ve worked with have some of their own ideas about what is and is not an acceptable article. So let's take a look at the regulations and determine what are acceptable articles for each of the levels of tests.
A DESCRIPTION OF THE PERFECT HANDLER WORKING THEIR TRACKING DOG
You get to the start flag. Your dog pauses long enough to get scent from the article you show him. You are organized, the line laid out untangled. You give a quiet command to track, and the dog leaves the flag. You wait to see the dog's level of commitment before you move. You know your dog's typical start behavior and know when to follow. You play out line to the required distance and set off.
One of the most important elements of a track is the start. In TD work, the start is a given, with two flags indicating the direction of the first leg. Once you move to TDX and VST things get a little tougher. Only a single flag marks the start of the track, choosing the direction is up to your dog.