Tag Archives: search and rescue

20th Annual ACE Award Winner: Search and Rescue Dog JoePete

JoePeteThis week, doggies.com is featuring the winners of the 20th AKC Humane Annual ACE Awards.

Part one: Uniformed Service K-9 Summer

Part two: Therapy Dog Gunther

Part three: Service Dog Polly

Today’s post features the winner in the Search and Rescue Category: JoePete.

“JoePete,” also known as “JP” is an eight-year-old Doberman Pinscher owned and handled by Cris Bean. Together they volunteer with the Michigan Search and Rescue.

Cris rescued JoePete in 2010 and he progressed rapidly through the human remains training program. However, just prior to achieving certification, JoePete received a very early diagnosis of Wobbler’s disease, a catchall term referring to several possible malformations of the cervical vertebrae that cause an unsteady (wobbly) gait and weakness in dogs and horses. Despite his diagnosis, JoePete achieved certification with Michigan Search and Rescue and went on to achieve certification with two national organizations as well. He has since participated in 29 missing person searches, helping to bring closure to many grieving families. He has also aided in local graveyard reconstruction projects by Historical Societies and landowners by helping to locate burial sites in forgotten cemeteries in and around the state of Michigan. Continue reading 20th Annual ACE Award Winner: Search and Rescue Dog JoePete

Frida, Mexico’s Hero

Via @Omarbamm on Twitter
Photo: @Omarbamm on Twitter

Meet Frida, who is a member of the Mexican Navy. This beautiful Labrador Retriever is a Search and Rrescue dog with over 50 finds under her collar. She has rescued 12 living people, and has earned a commendation from the President of Mexico.

According to the LA Times, she was deployed last Tuesday to assist in finding survivors beneath the Enrique Rebsamen school. Although Frida is 7 years old, she was able to participate on a limited basis with the search, confirming information brought back by Evil and Echo, two Belgian Malinois who are just starting their careers in Search and Rescue.

I can’t post the video from the times, but you can see the whole story here.

Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!

Bretagne, Last 9/11 Search & Rescue Dog, Dead at Age 16


Of the more than 300 search and rescue dogs working at Ground Zero, Bretagne was the last survivor. Today.com broke the news this evening that the Golden Retriever hadn’t eaten for three days when her partner, Denise Corliss, made the difficult decision that it was time to say goodbye. Continue reading Bretagne, Last 9/11 Search & Rescue Dog, Dead at Age 16

Meet the AKC ACE Honoree for Search and Rescue

ACE Ty SAR German ShepherdHandled by Melissa Frye of Southport, Florida, Ty, officially known as K-9 Ty Ty Road RN CGC, is an eight-year-old German Shepherd Dog trained in human remains detection. Over the span of his six year career, Ty has become the go-to K-9 in his department for recovery searches, helping to bring closure to families that have lost loved ones. Continue reading Meet the AKC ACE Honoree for Search and Rescue

MWD: Meapons of Wass Destruction?

No, actually MWD stands for military working dog. The US Air Force has recently shed a bit of light on the training program it uses to train dogs for everything from guard duty to explosives detection.

First, the dog must be the right breed. The Air Force most commonly uses German Shepherd and Belgian Malinois, with a slight preference for the Malinois due to its longer average lifespan. Next, the dog is evaluated for its drive or “ability to remain focused and determined to obtain a goal”, according to Staff Sgt. Manuel Garcia of the 35th Security Forces Squadron.

The dog must undergo basic training, just as airmen do, at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. The program lasts from four to six months, depending on whether or not the dog gets held back for remedial training.

After being sent to its permanent base, the dog spends a few weeks with its new handler, learning to follow his commands. When the dog is ready, they review the basic obedience learned at Lackland, staying close to the handler and obeying his basic commands.

A few weeks later, the dog moves on to advanced obedience, where he learns to follow the same commands, even though he is off leash and at a distance from his handler. The dog also learns to crawl and roll, tactical moves he may need later.

Soon, the lessons begin to include actual work skills such as detection, attack, search, and working under the gun (literally!)

Once trained, the dog will work between 10 and 12 years, then be retired. He could be adopted, returned to Lackland to train new dogs, or be given to local police departments for further work.

A round of applause for our military working dogs! (As well as those they work with!)

Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!