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K-9 Search and Rescue

Chief (a Redbone Coonhound/Lab cros) was my first search dog. He was destined for the shelter when I rescued him.  We trained extensively in area search, avalanche, land cadaver and water recovery.  He finally retired from all field work at 12 years old after dozens of searches over his lifetime, with several successful finds. On October 19, 2010 I said goodbye to my companion, friend and working partner of 13.5 years. He will always remain a part of me in my heart, soul, and memories.

I began training both myself and my canine partner “Chief” in search and rescue work in 1997 when Chief was just a puppy. I spent the first two years working and training with Missoula County Search and Rescue and Clarkfork Bitterroot Search Dogs. In 1999 I moved to Logan, UT and began working and training with Weber County Search and Rescue and American Search Dogs until I moved yet again in 2003, to my present location in Bloomington, IL. I currently am the K9 Operations Team Sergeant with McLean County Emergency Management Agency. Since moving to Illinois, our operational emphasis is on land and water cadaver and first responder disaster cadaver. In 2005 I began to train my second search dog, T-Top’s Sula Montana. “Sula” is a purebred Redbone Coonhound and she was certified in trailing, land cadaver and water recovery with the International Police Work Dog Association. She retired in 2015 due to a diagnosis of Osteosarcoma and an amputation of her left hind limb.  But Sula continues to thrive in retirement, beating the cancer odds.  In 2011 I began to train my third K9 partner, Tanbark’s To Infinity and Beyond, “Buzz”. Buzz is a male Golden Retriever from strong working/field trial lines and he is certified for disaster, area search and human remains detection.   In August 2016 I began to train my fourth partner, Ghostryder’s Bazook Jane “Jessie”, who is also a Golden Retriever from strong field lines.  Jessie is training for human remains detection work.

Some of My Favorite Links For K-9 Search and Rescue News, Training, and Information:

Examples in the Field – Water Rescue:

​K-9 Sula (Redbone Coonhound) training for water recovery work.

Examples in the Field – Trailing:

K-9 Sula (Redbone Coonhound) trailing in training. 

K-9 Buzz:

Buzz at 12 months, training for live find disaster and area search work. Buzz is a working/field trial line of Golden Retrievers and is certified in disaster, area search, and human remains detection.  ​I look forward to an exciting career working with him!

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