Search and Rescue hosts dog training weekend

Several dogs were on the Sunshine Coast recently for a training session hosted by Sunshine Coast Search and Rescue.

On the last weekend of August, residents near Heritage Road and Mason Road in Sechelt donated land for the training operation, organized by local Search and Rescue dog handler Joyce Tattersall along with Jean Daly from Powell River Search and Rescue and BC Search Dog Association.

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“This training could not take place without the help of these residents as the handlers need a large area to train in and put clues out,” said Andy Evans of Sunshine Coast SAR.

Approximately six dogs and their handlers attended the two-day training session, including members from Powell River, Vancouver Island, Revelstoke, Pemberton and Surrey.

Five of the dogs are validated in air scenting, while one is still in training. Police dog handlers are training the dogs in how to track, while another handler observed the process with her dog.

Tattersall tries to include at least one training session on the Coast each year, while other sessions occur throughout the region.

Last year, seven dogs were on the Coast in August for obedience and tracking training. As of this year, 17 dogs in the province are certified for search and rescue.

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