training a Search and Rescue dog - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 01:40 PM Thread Starter
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training a Search and Rescue dog

hey there!
ive been training my GSD in tracking and plan on getting involved in search and rescue. I have her able to just purely a human scent right now and is able to find people and a pretty good distance (though im makeing it farther now) so what next? Whats my next move? Do i contact a pro?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 03:36 PM
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Well that is awesome! Your best bet will be to find a SAR group in your area and contact them. Possibly someone from the forum is doing SAR in your area and can give you contact info, or you can search on-line. If you are lucky there will be a SAR group in your area, however more likely there will be a bit of travel involved. Good luck!
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 04:18 PM
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I wouldn't do any training in SAR without working with a team

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 05:15 PM
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Get in contact with a team and make sure you get to know that team. Most importantly, you have to be able to commit to the team and really do it. There is a lot more to SAR than just the K9 Training.

First and foremost, you have to be trained as a Ground Pounder (DEC BASIC), in Land Navigation, First Aid, Wilderness First Aid, possibly EMT, you have to get the very Basics down. Most Teams require either the SARTECH I or the ASTM Searcher I. For all that you need experience and to be with the team one or two years, and actually go out on Searches as a Ground Pounder and K9 Flanker.

Once you've got all that you can start to think about certifying your dog as a Search Dog.

Ask yourself, do you have the time and commitment to do it?

It means E.V.E.R.Y Weekend. Lot's of training, lots of driving, during the week, at the weekend, 24/7 on call. It's unpaid, you put the money in it for the gear, gas and training hours.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 07:08 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mrs.K View Post
Get in contact with a team and make sure you get to know that team. Most importantly, you have to be able to commit to the team and really do it. There is a lot more to SAR than just the K9 Training.

First and foremost, you have to be trained as a Ground Pounder (DEC BASIC), in Land Navigation, First Aid, Wilderness First Aid, possibly EMT, you have to get the very Basics down. Most Teams require either the SARTECH I or the ASTM Searcher I. For all that you need experience and to be with the team one or two years, and actually go out on Searches as a Ground Pounder and K9 Flanker.

Once you've got all that you can start to think about certifying your dog as a Search Dog.

Ask yourself, do you have the time and commitment to do it?

It means E.V.E.R.Y Weekend. Lot's of training, lots of driving, during the week, at the weekend, 24/7 on call. It's unpaid, you put the money in it for the gear, gas and training hours.
ok thank you! I needed to know what to expect! I was either going to certify her as a S&R dog or therapy. either one of the two, she seems to love seeing people and also loves finding things. Im comitted to doing either one, just as long as i could get her CGC, wich i really wanna get. She just has toget over her dog aggression (wich has dwindled dramatically in the last month). Either one would put her to good work, and make her extremely happy. I just gotta figure out ich one would work best for us.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 08:03 PM
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Neither, SAR Dogs, nor Therapy Dogs can be dog aggressive.

How bad is it?
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 09:13 PM
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All good advice so far and definite must get over dog agression. SAR dogs often actually encounter unfriendly dogs and have to be able to work in situations where other dogs may be getting in the way. Therapy work, I cannot answer.

The main thing about SAR is the dog is just a tool. Yes, an important one, but there is so much more to it than that....SAR calls you cannot schedule, therapy work you can. SAR also pretty much becomes a way of life, consuming most of your vacation time from work. Definitely talking with a team and getting a realistic picture of the committment is a very good idea.

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 10:39 PM Thread Starter
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Neither, SAR Dogs, nor Therapy Dogs can be dog aggressive.

How bad is it?
Not too bad. it used to be, but since she turned one it has dramatically decreased. I was able to take her to the park off leash without dogs around and didnt have a problem at all. She also listens to her commands very well around them too. The only dog she goes crazy is at this boxer, and she has even gotten better with him. Ill deff talk to a rescue team, it sounds like a good thing to get involved in! alot of comitment though, and im very fine with that.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 10:44 PM
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Even if you can't do K9, it's very rewarding, and tons of fun. Especially when you enjoy being outdoors and like working in a team.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2012, 10:56 PM Thread Starter
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Even if you can't do K9, it's very rewarding, and tons of fun. Especially when you enjoy being outdoors and like working in a team.
ya thats me! xD when im home im always outside with celia either working on tricks or just having plain fun. She knows atleast 200 different cues at the age of one XD its and obsession that i do when im not working, studying, or with friends. I would love to put her wonderful mind to great use. If both S+R and Therapy choices dont happen, i will deff get involved in canine freestyle X3 She has incredible obidience skill and mannorism, its just the dog aggression thats slowing us down, but she is getting much better with them and hopefully with alot of time and patience it will wane completely away
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