Nala´s World #7: An SAR dog´s Raw Training

Hey peeps!

Last time I woofed to you what working in a Search and Rescue Dog Squad is about; searching, finding and indicating but is that all a SAR dog has to perform? Noooo way! I have a whole bunch of other things I have to train with my human pet. First of all: obedience. Of course, an SAR dog has to obey in any situation – that is crucial for both my and the possible victim´s life. In addition, the exams we have to pass every 1.5 years include an obedience part with heel work, sit, and stand; lie down out of moving etc. Secondly, I have to train my body feeling. Like a ballerina, why? Because in rubble, I may not be able to reach the area I shall search in easily.

So there may be ladders or small planks I have to pass or climb to get into my search area. So among other things, I learn to walk on ladders – both even and slanted. Here is a video of me training that:


Finally, I have to take the directions my mom gives me. In a real life scenario, the dog handler often cannot walk in the disaster area itself as he/she would be too heavy /too dangerous. So I may be directed from distance by my mom where to run to, stay, and where to search.

Here you see two training videos: the first shows a task that is part of the SAR dog exam where the dog has to be directed to three cones (left/middle/right) in 20 meters distance, the order is given by the judges.


The second direction/handling from distance training video shows me on a walk in the forest. My mom always tries to find different obstacles to train on. So here you can see me being sent over a wood pile with a “stay” command being up there, and then coming back to her.


Well, that was an insight into a SAR dog´s raw training.  As the spring sun is tickling my nose right now, I guess I will find mommy to let her now it´s time for a walk.

Woof to you soon, yours Nala x


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