Digging in the dirt is lagottos first passion. They will follow their noses anywhere the scent takes them and when it comes to truffles, they love to work.
Truffle are found throughout the Pacific Northwest
Truffles are native to North America and in the Pacific Northwest we happen to live in one of the best areas to find the three species of truffle (Leucangium carthusianum, Tuber gibbosum, Tuber oregonense) located in our wilderness. Truffles form an association with certain tree species and as they grow underground are not easily located without the assistance of trained dogs. Lagotto are willing, eager hunters and are easily trained. While we are blessed with many programs in the area who will train dogs to hunt truffle, the basic skills can be obtained by simply playing games - a hide and seek with a truffle scented target quickly opens a young lagotto up to the concept of hunting for its scent - in exchange for a treat. Unlike pigs who are known to take fingers as they dig for truffle, lagotti are satisfied to simply win the game and trade the precious treasure for a bit of cheese or other yummy morsel.
Truffles can be grown in domestic Truffieres (truffle orchard).
For those who prefer to bring the truffle to them, truffle have been successfully grown around the world as science has started to break the secrets of truffle cultivation. While the most expensive truffle, Tuber Magnatum, has yet
to be domesticated on a large scale, a number of other varieties have been successfully cultivated from Europe to Australia, South Africa to Chile and for the last 20 years, in the U.S.A. Trees inoculated with French black truffles (Tuber Melanosporum), Burgundy truffles (Tuber aestivum), bianchetto truffles (Tuberborchii) have all been planted locally. While it can take up to 10 years for young trees to produce truffles, we eagerly anticipate when that will happen. In the mean time our young truffle orchards provide a playground for our dogs to run and play in.
We believe that as working dogs, our Lagotto need to be given work and our first lagotto loves to be given a task and to be worked with.