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It’s a Dog’s Life: Working Dogs in Search and Rescue

You’ve seen it on television – a dog is given an article of clothing to sniff and told to go find the person it smells like. Off he goes, nose to the ground, a handler hustling along at the end of the taut leash, crashing through the underbrush until whining or baying, the dog ends the search and the person is rescued. Good boy, Lola, You save the day or solved the crime! These incredibly important members of our local or federal police force are known as Search and Rescue Dogs – SAR for short.

In reality, search and 올인구조대 dogs may work in a wide variety of circumstances and often develop specialized talents. When might the authorities “call in the dogs?” Examples can be:

• Children who wandered off from their parents on a nature walk and are now lost in park, wilderness, parks or even lost closer to home
• The elderly folks who have meandered from their homes and/or hospitals
• Hunters and/or hikers who are lost in the woods and risking exposure
• Victims of boating accidents, train wrecks, plane crashes, explosions
• Victims of natural disasters such as fires, earthquakes, avalanches, floods, tornadoes or hurricanes

Some dogs are so specialized in their training that they are able to search for evidence in crime scenes or missing bodies who are victims of homicide.

Types of Scent Dogs
Air Scent – Some dogs are used to “sniff” for scent in the air. In order to successfully detect scents in the air, these specialized dogs work with their heads held high in the air, which directs their noses the best. When they smell what they are searching for, the air scent dog will indicate this by elevating his head even higher and his tale will either point straight up or out. This term is known as “alert”. The alert is a communication from the dog to his handler that a detection is made.

Tracking/Trailing – A tracking/trailing dog does all his work on the ground. You’ve probably seen examples of this on television or in the movies. It is certainly more visual than the work that an air scent dog performs. All people leave a piece of themselves on the ground as they walk. Dogs can detect this where we are unable to sense someone has been there. Once detecting the scent, the dog follows it.

Advanced Certifications:
Beyond the two distinctions listed above, dogs and handlers may pursue additional advanced certifications in the following areas.

• Area Search
• Trailing
• Land Cadaver/Human Remains Detection
• Water Cadaver/Human Remains Detection
• Avalanche
• First Responder Disaster
• First Responder Disaster Cadaver/Human Remains
• Detection

It seems that, just like people develop talents and predilections for certain types of work, dogs too can develop incredibly specific talents and skills.