Certified Deer Tracking Dog Information
Per N.J.S.A. Title 23:4-46, the Division will be issuing permits to individuals who possess certified tracking dogs for the purpose of using those dogs to search for and recover deer or black bear lost by a hunter during any deer or bear hunting seasons prescribed by the Game Code.
The minimum certification accepted will be UBT-1 from United Blood Trackers, Inc., or the equivalent from another recognized tracking dog organization. Photos of each certified dog must be submitted along with an application provided by the Division. Each handler must possess a valid NJ hunting license for the current year.
- The handler must notify the appropriate Division law enforcement office (Northern Region: 908-735-8240; Central Region: 609-259-2120; Southern Region: 856-629-0555) before beginning each search. The name of the handler, the name and CID number of the hunter, and the location of activity must be provided at that time.
- The permit must be carried by the handler during recovery activities and must be made available for visual inspection to any interested party.
- Tracking activities may take place on Wildlife Management Areas and on other properties with permission of the landowner or administrative authority.
- Dogs must be on a leash/lead at all times. The leash may only be temporarily dropped while traversing areas of thick brush or obstacles that the handler cannot negotiate.
- Animals may be tracked with the aid of lights.
- Animals may be dispatched by licensed sportsmen only during legal hunting season dates and hours.
- Animals must be tagged immediately upon recovery and checked via the Automated Harvest Report System as required by the Game Code for the particular hunting season.
- No weapons may be carried, except during legal hunting seasons and hunting hours by licensed sportsmen. During that time, the handler may require that firearms remain unloaded or arrows remain un-nocked, until such time as may be required to dispatch a located animal.
- The permittee must conform to all Federal, State, and local statutes, rules, codes, and ordinances pertaining to the discharge of firearms. No loaded firearm or nocked arrow shall be possessed within 450 feet of an occupied building or school playground unless written authorization has been obtained from the owners or lessees of said building(s). The discharge of a firearm upon or across any state, county or municipal road or highway is prohibited. Firearms shall not be discharged from any vehicle.
- Records must be maintained on all animals tracked. Records shall include the date, location, CID number of hunter, and recovery status of each animal tracked.
- Within 14 days following the expiration date of the permit, all tracking activity conducted under the permit must be summarized and submitted on a report form provided by the Division.
Certified Deer Tracking Dog Permit Application (pdf, 130kb)
Certified Deer Tracking Dog Permittees (pdf, 230kb)
Certified Deer Tracking Dog Report Form (pdf, 200kb)
For additional assistance contact Lisa Clark at Lisa.Clark@dep.nj.gov or 609-508-3760.