Size of SAR dogs? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
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Size of SAR dogs?

I've always wondered if smaller dogs would be better suited for SAR situations like in Haiti - where they could maneuver the rubble better and get into more places than a larger dog.

Are there small (as in Crested sized) SAR dogs?
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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 06:26 PM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

I've certainly seen/heard of Aussies and border collies being SAR dogs, don't see why a smaller dog couldn't. I think a JRT would be perfect for searching through earthquake rubble.

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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 06:33 PM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

I've wondered that myself. The smallest dog I've ever seen personally doing SAR was a very small Aussie (like 20lbs). She was an HRD dog.

Does the Mighty Mite forum have any members with working SAR dogs?


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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 06:42 PM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

I have heard of small terriers like Jack Russells being used for SAR.

Here is an American Hairless Terrier SAR dog:
http://www.ahts.ca/scooby.htm

AHTs are a hairless version of the Rat Terrier. I was interested in doing SAR or detection work with my Rat Terrier... He was very agile and good at scenting but then he was diagnosed with hip dysplasia. I can see how they would be good for this type of work due to their agility and balance.


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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 07:01 PM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

I would be worried about a hairless dog- they don't have the protection that a coated dog has and I'd be concerned about the dog getting scraped up, especially in urban rescue.

But then again I am NOT a SAR person but it makes sense to me.

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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 07:03 PM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

On another note, there was another earthquake today in Haiti. It's a 4.3 or something close to that. Poor people!

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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 07:39 PM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

In our local SAR group there is an area search dog that can't be more than 15 pounds. He was a rescue and he's awesome (crazy energy put to use!).

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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 07:40 PM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

My 11 inch, 18 lb beagle has been taking tracking lessons for months, and is a natural. She is (most likely) starting too late for SAR. But she has a killer work ethic and worked multiple surfaces her first time out.

Beagles have that nose after all...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHVoE_V0G4o

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xhHZS2X4tc

(Someone -- I think it was Nancy -- posted for me additional links to videos of a woman in San Diego who has been doing SAR with beagles for years.)

Eleven inch beagles would a great choice because they're small and don't weigh much, but still sturdy like their bigger 13 inch counterparts. Even appropriately sized 13" beagles shouldn't weigh more than about 25 lbs.





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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 07:55 PM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

Agility is very important. High drive and rock solid nerves are the most important traits.
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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-25-2010, 07:15 AM
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Re: Size of SAR dogs?

I have struggled with that one myself. I can see pros and cons to working a small RUGGED dog....

Nancy



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