New training…

Posted: February 14, 2011 in Uncategorized

Kyzer & Jasper have the makings of a GREAT Search & Rescue Team because they WORK TOGETHER!

Hans & I have been training in some manner ever since the little nipper came home.  My wife CarolAnn, also trains with him, although she’s doing completely different activities.

Recently, we have started to train for HRD, (Human Remains Detection), as well as other Specific Scent detection.  It’s a very interesting process, especially observing the dogs reaction to what he’s being asked to find.  Reading Hans’ is my biggest lesson, observing his reactions to scents, and understanding what he is telling me.  HE knows what he’s doing, and he’s teaching me.

One of my personal observations about S&R groups and HRD Teams, is that the spirit of Competition is everywhere.  Internal politics is the norm, and that every team thinks another team stinks.  This applies to CIVILIAN teams for the most part.  In contrast,  Law Enforcement teams have a competitive atmosphere, but in the end, they seem to understand that they are all on the same team, and the competition is outward and usually good-natured.  They reflect a FAMILIAR Professionalism with each other, Brothers-in-Arms if you will.

Recently, we spent a day with a small team, training in a house for HRD work.  It was a small, cramped, space, but the session was positive for the most part.  Until the debriefing that is…

Since I had no affiliation as a member yet, I observed things from a different perspective.  I asked questions that would help me understand how this team felt about themselves, thier skill level, and other teams.  In short, I’ll just title it, “BASH-FEST”.  It seems that no other S & R team within 100 miles was worth their wieght in cat food…”They don’t use Positive training methods”…”They use pseudo-scents…”  “They’re not NASAR qualified”…”They’re more interested in in wearing matchinmg uniforms than real Search work…”         It went on and on.  Really, it was unfortunate, because at least one of the Dog/Handler teams was really very skilled.  Hopefully she will find a more positive team to work with in the future. 

With Local Law Enforcement agencies continuing to lose their K-9 Units due to budgetary constraints, eventually our civilian K9 search teams will find acceptance by those in need.  But until we all learn to support and build each others teams up,  we will all be relegated to the “Wannabee” file.  This is going to be a hard learned fact for some who currently call themselves “K9 Search & Rescue” in the civilian ranks.  All of the day-glo vests( festooned with 14 inch high letters proclaiming “K-9 UNIT”)  mean nothing to the Professional world of Law Enforcement and Disaster Aid, unless they know that the VOLUNTEER force can cooperate with those in charge, and work TOGETHER.  If you are already training with a team, or are interested, keep this in mind please…

  1. omorrow says:

    Totally a shame considering it is a common effort, just like anything else from horse shows to beauty pageants, the need to trash someone else to elevate self is universal. Competition is a healthy thing, excellence can be obtained through the right amount , but too much can ultimately damage the goals with the focus on each other and not the task at hand! You “GO”, Robert and have always taken the high road! You will continue to excel for this reason. This is why I stay as far away from shows as I possibly can. Religion and politics…..