Reply To: FE520 The nature of Truffle Oils

Alana McGee

Hi Sandra.

Your packaged shipped yesterday and is on its way to you now.

The rate at which the volatiles degrade or spoil will depend on the specific oil/ training solution your are using. If kept out of heat, what you are doing is just fine! Every couple of weeks I would add a drop or two- go by your own sense of smell if you are using a commercially produced oil.

For the truffle solution we make, yes, it is a compound solution so that is precisely the idea is to familiarize the dog with a variety of odors at once. We recommend adding a few drops every week if you are storing training aids like that. We also strongly encourage the use of just one odor at a time too, if available. (Hence the Joel Palmer house oils of each species).

Every dog is different, and the key to successful truffle hunting is in the dog recognizing and alerting on an ‘array’ of specific volatiles, not necessarily in conjunction with each other. Some dogs are very literal and for them it can be important to work not only on a compound solution but on each odor independently as well.

Eventually you will want to practice with the real thing (fresh or frozen) if you can, for a variety of reasons, which is something I believe we talk about in this course if not FE530, as well. It isn’t absolutely necessary, mind you, but again, our goal is to have you be as prepared as possible for truffle hunting and finding real truffles growing in the field.

We generally tell students to pick one odor, (the compound solution is fine for this) and then once you are confident enough in your training, or say at the stage you & Tippet are at, to start working with the other species you intend to find. Based on what we have seen, it is our opinion Tippet is unlikely to have any problems switching odors or scents, and will alert on any found in the array, but you should still practice occasionally using targets with just one or another species.

For example- say you plant 5 hides. Two of them with white oil, 2 with black oil, and 1 with the compound solution.

It is made to be stable at room temperature and not decay (so shelf life of a year), but both our training solution and Joel Palmer house truffle oil will last longer if refrigerated.