Field Tech Don on river boat exercise.
Member News -
Many thanks to S/Sgt. Tom Bechtold, Edmonton Police Service K-9 Unit, for officiating at our certifications.
Congratulations to the following teams for successfully re-certifiying this year -
Mark and Shado - live find
Carlene and Jake - live find
Lisa and Zero - live find
Maryann and Twang (HRD)
Maryann and Yoyo (HRD) - new!
Kate and Jenga - Live Find - new and a first SAR Dog for Saskatchewan!
Standing (l to r) - SARDAA president Mike, S/Sgt Tom Bechtold, Michelle. Kneeling - Kate and Jenga chewing on her reward toy!!! Photo credit - Shelley Ballard-McKinlay
Members who recently moved up a level. Congratulations everyone on your hard work!
Kate to Active Field Tech
Elisa to Active Field Tech
Jenna and Sohke to Associate Level (Live)
Kim and Remy to Associate Level (HRD)
Pam and Sofie to Associate (HRD)
Meighan and Chase to Associate (Live)
Zara and Cinder to Associate (live)
Two of our members have new puppies to train! All the best for many successes! Introducing Milo and Zoeker!
Dutch Shepherd, Milo; new pup for Carlene (live find).
Dutch Shepherd Zoeker has a new home with Steve and is training in HRD!
Alberta Emergency Services Medal presentation - July 2018
Congratulations to Zara on 12 years of volunteer service! Zara received her Alberta Emergency Services medal at our July 29 meeting!
President Mike presented Zara with her medal.
Edmonton Police Service Mock Exercise - May 26
Several SARDAA members participated in the annual EPS mock exercise in the spring. The EPS SAR Managers did a great job on the session. These events are always a great learning experience for all involved.
Clover Bar Jr. High Presentation
On May 4 Meighan and Jenna did a presentation on SAR dogs and SARDAA at Clover Bar Jr. High. The presentation was for Miss Jones’s Place Class (Place is the name of the program she teaches for Special needs kids). The kids, including Ben pictured here with Chase, got to watch Ivy find a tooth and hair on a brush, and Chase found some missing articles and then played a game of “hide and seek” in the schoolyard with the help of Jenna and the teachers.
Several SARDAA members attended the SAR Alberta conference in Drayton Valley at Norquest College April 28 and 29. Members dispersed to the many different presentations including sessions on D4H, PTSD, Code of Conduct, SAR AB survey results, search managers' forum, OFC Q&A. There were many other presentations available and the opportunity for networking was very good. Attendance was well worth the very reasonable cost and we look forward to next year's conference.
Jr. Forest Wardens
On May 26, Kim and Remy plus Michelle and Tyndre did a presentation about SARDAA followed by a demo for the children at their annual camp-out by Peers, AB.
Michelle and Tyndre; Kim and Remy in the background.
Kim is ready to send Remy on a search.
Get Ready in the Park - 2018
Jenna and Sohke, Kerrie, Jenna and Ivy with one of the SARDAA boats.
Cabela's Hometown Heroes Event - June 16
SARDAA members and K9s were happy to participated in Cabela's Hometown Heroes event in June!
St. Albert Emergency Services Open House - June 3
SARDAA members participated in this event in St. Albert. It was a hot day and the event was busy!
SARDAA member Meighan is a very good photographer and snapped this photo of Maryann, behind her back!!!
There goes Maryann with one of her dogs to do a practice HRD search. Photo by Meighan.
Eliminating Skunk Smell from Dogs!
Best Way to Get Rid of Skunk Smell:
• quart of 3% hydrogen peroxide solution (found at any pharmacy or supermarket)
• 1/4 cup of baking soda
• 1 teaspoon of liquid dishwashing soap Wearing rubber gloves, work the solution into your dog’s coat, washing him thoroughly. Don’t leave the solution on his fur for too long since peroxide can bleach his fur. Then rinse completely. You might have to repeat the process more than once.
If you don’t have these ingredients on hand, the next best option is one of the old-time remedies, like vinegar diluted with water. While not as effective, it may still help clean your dog and get rid of the smell. Shampoo Your Dog: Use a regular dog shampoo to remove any residual solution and to leave your dog smelling clean.
Towel dry your dog: Let him finish drying in a warm sunny room.
Wash Your Own Clothes: If any of the skunk smell gets on you during the bathing process, wash your clothes in regular laundry detergent and 1/2 cup of baking soda. Important Notes –
Use the mixture described above immediately after mixing and do not store it. It can explode if kept in a closed container.
• Be careful not to get the solution in your dog’s eyes.
• Don’t leave the mixture on your dog’s coat for too long. According to the Humane Society, the peroxide may bleach your dog’s fur.
• Don’t use a hydrogen peroxide solution stronger than 3%, it can irritate your dog’s skin
• It may be impossible to get rid of the odor completely, especially if your dog is sprayed in the face.
Short of somehow training your dog to stay at least 15 feet away from skunks, your best bet is to have these ingredients on hand. Or you can buy one of several commercial products available, like Skunk-Off Pet Shampoo®, Skunk-Off Liquid Soaker®, or Nature’s Miracle Skunk Odor Remover®, and hope you never have to use it.
Extra Boating photo -
Field Tech Ron piloting the river boat during a practice exercise!
Warning Signs of Dehydration in Dogs
By Anna Burke Reprinted from American Kennel Club on-line publication What Is Dehydration?
Most of us know that dehydration occurs when the body loses more fluid than it's taking in. When we get really thirsty, especially after a long, hot day or a tough workout, we can tell our bodies are dehydrated. Our mouths are dry. We crave water. Some of us get headaches, and many of us, unfortunately, grow irritable.
Dehydration, however, can have more serious effects on our bodies than simply making us unpleasant to be around.
All mammals rely on water to keep their bodies functioning, and dogs are no exception. Water plays a huge role in your dog's body. The short list of water's functions includes lubricating joints, helping regulate body temperature, transporting nutrients, flushing waste, and more. The long list could fill a medical textbook.
Normally, water is lost and gained throughout the day. Panting, breathing, urinating, defecating, and evaporation through the paws all contribute to normal water loss, which your dog compensates for by eating and drinking.
When your dog's body passes the point where normal activities can make up for the water loss, fluid shifts out of your dog's body cells to help the body quench its thirst. This results in a loss of electrolytes, such as sodium, chloride, and potassium. Since these electrolytes are important for muscle function, not to mention many other body processes, your dog's body starts to suffer. In serious cases, dehydration can even lead to kidney and other organ failure, and death.
This is unfortunate, since knowing the signs of dehydration can help you catch a serious medical condition before it gets out of control.
Here are some of the common symptoms to get you started:
• Loss of appetite
• Reduced energy levels and/or lethargy
• Sunken, dry-looking eyes
• Dry nose and gums
• Loss of skin elasticity
Some of these are obvious to the naked eye, but others, like skin elasticity, require a simple test.
To test for dehydration in dogs, gently pinch their skin between your thumb and forefinger. In well-hydrated dogs, the skin will spring back to its original position. The skin of dehydrated dogs, on the other hand, will take longer to fall back into place.
It is a good idea to test your dog's skin when you are sure your dog is well hydrated, so that you have a base for what normal skin elasticity for your dog feels like. This is especially important for owners of wrinkly breeds, such as Bulldogs or Neapolitan Mastiffs, because their wrinkly skin might be misleading.
You can also test your dog's gums for dehydration. Dogs' gums are normally nice and moist, and in some cases, positively slimy. Dry, tacky-feeling gums, on the other hand, are a symptom of dehydration. If you've ever experienced a dry mouth as a side effect of a medication, then you have an idea of what this feels like.
As you are feeling your dog's gums, you can also test for capillary refill time. Press your finger gently against your dog's gums, and then remove your finger. In hydrated dogs, the area where you pressed will appear white for a second, and then return to its normal pink color almost immediately. In dehydrated dogs, the capillary refill time takes much longer.
Causes of Dehydration in Dogs
Dehydration can be caused by lack of water, but it is often a symptom of an underlying cause.
The first thing you should do if you suspect your pet is dehydrated is check to make sure he's had access to plenty of fresh, clean water all day. Sometimes, our pets' water bowls run dry, despite our best intentions, and this can be problematic on particularly hot days. In a vicious cycle, dehydrated dogs can lose their appetites, which causes them to eat less, and therefore eliminates the water content they would normally get from their food, too.
Symptoms of Dehydration in Dogs
So how can you tell if your dog is dehydrated?
Knowing the symptoms of dehydration in humans is something we take for granted when diagnosing ourselves, but most owners do not know the signs of dehydration in dogs.
1) If your dog is not eating, or vomiting with or without diarrhea, suspect your dog is dehydrated and seek veterinary attention.
Dehydration is a common symptom associated with serious diseases, such as kidney disease, heat stroke, cancer, diabetes, and any disease that causes vomiting, diarrhea, or fever.
Your dog's body loses water and electrolytes when he is sick, due to fever, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and other processes. This is why veterinarians often give sick pets fluids to keep them hydrated while they recover.
Very young dogs, senior dogs, nursing mothers, and toy dog breeds may be at an increased risk of dehydration, so be sure you know the signs of dehydration in dogs if your dog falls into one of these categories.
Treating Dehydration in Dogs
It might seem like offering your dog a bowl of water is enough to restore her water balance, but this only applies to very mild cases of dehydration.
2) If your dog is dehydrated for a medical reason, like diarrhea, bloody diarrhea, or heat stroke, you need to take her to the veterinarian. These are considered veterinarian emergencies. Dehydration makes it harder for your pet to recover, increasing her risks of suffering damaging or possibly fatal consequences.
Water is not the only thing dehydrated dogs lose. Those electrolytes also need to be replaced, and water alone will not get the job done. Your veterinarian may recommend giving your dog fluids to help balance her systems, and you may need to return to your veterinarian's office a few times for more fluids while your dog recovers.
Dehydration is often a symptom of a larger problem, so in addition to fluids, your veterinarian will want to diagnose and treat the underlying condition. This process will depend on your dog's other symptoms, and could involve anything from blood work and radiographs to surgery.
Preventing Dehydration in Dogs
The best way that you can prevent dehydration in your dog is to provide him with a constant supply of fresh, clean water. Like people, some dogs drink more than others, so you may need to take extra care to make sure picky drinkers get enough water. Your veterinarian can offer you advice about how best to ensure your dog consumes enough fluids, based on his age and condition.
We can't always prevent our dogs from getting sick, beyond keeping them up-to-date on their vaccines, and providing them with a healthy diet and exercise. But knowing the signs of dehydration can help us catch it before it becomes dangerous. Dehydration can also serve as a warning sign that something else is going on with your dog, helping to catch dangerous diseases and conditions before they get out-of-hand.
For more information about the signs of dehydration in dogs, or if you suspect that your dog might be dehydrated, contact your veterinarian.
Long time SARDAA member and dog handler moves her home to Saskatchewan!
Dawn and her family have been moving to SK ever since she joined us 11 years ago.... it's finally taking place! Dawn is maintaining her membership in SARDAA even though Aussie is retired and she will only be here occasionally. We all wish Dawn happiness in her new SK home!!!
Aussie (retired SAR Dog) and Dawn.
In Memory of SAR-dog Tyndre
... owner/trainer/handler Michelle L.
Unfortunately, none of our dogs live forever and it was my turn to experience an unhappy event this month. Tyndre, officially known as Gravin Garmina vd Accani, CD, TD, BH, WAC, CGN, and SARDAA accredited SAR-Dog (live find) died of heart disease on July 26. It wasn't Cardiomyopathy so common in Dobermans, just a heart that went south on her. Needless to say, it was unexpected. Just a couple of days earlier she was bouncing around as usual. She was 11 years old in May and didn’t look or act her age. I originally brought her home from Boise, ID as the antithesis to the recalcitrant SAR-Dog Parquetta who had moved over to human remains detection. Tyndre was so cute as a pup that I left her ears floppy and that ended up helping people know which of my dogs was which!
Tyndre was always lots of fun to train and work with, and could be counted on to do her work well and with lots of energy. Her nemesis consisted of bikes, jack rabbits and cats! Tyndre had an eventful life and she was a bit accident prone, often getting deep cuts and gouges; and I occasionally unintentionally tried to kill her myself with blue berries and raw hide bones (yes, there are stories behind those incidents)! Life was always interesting! During her career, Tyndre was fortunate enough to have a couple of documented ‘finds’ for our tasking agency which of course makes all the training worthwhile. She wasn’t the ‘perfect’ dog but awfully close!!!
Editors note – Scent Dog News is produced by the Search and Rescue Dog Association of Alberta. Submissions are welcome but are subject to approval and editing. Editor – Michelle Limoges; Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Kate removing sticky vegetation from Jenga's coat after her certification test!