American Humane Associations Hero Dog Awards - 2012 Finalists
Category: Search and Rescue Dogs
Location: Charleston, West Virginia
Charity Partner:Sage Foundation For Dogs Who Serve
Lorrie adopted Soot, a black Labrador, and quickly realized he needed a job. Lorrie never dreamed finding Soot a job would lead the dog to rescuing a lost 78-year-old, diabetic hunter one cold December morning. Soot is an air scent, scent discriminating, certified search and rescue dog trained to find lost subjects in the wilderness. The hunter left early November 30th for a day of hunting with his son, they separated and planned to meet back at their truck around noon. The dad failed to return, the son searched for hours, until near dark the son called 911 for help. Soot and Lorrie arrived on site late November 30th. A scent article was used from the hunter’s coat. They searched one area around the hunter’s truck, and then were directed to a second location, a remote mountaintop in Logan County, West Virginia. Here Soot picked up the hunter’s scent, leading the searchers several miles away where the hunter was located at 5:30 a.m., December 1st, five miles from his truck. After confirming the lost hunter was okay Lorrie happily rewarded Soot with his tennis ball (all Soot wants when finding a subject at training is a green tennis ball - they call it having a "party" so Soot will realize what a good job he has done). Needless to say, there was lots of "partying" on the mountain that morning. Lorrie and Soot want to thank WV K-9 Search and Rescue and local volunteers for their help in locating this gentleman. Soot is definitely a Hero Dog! Soot is supporting The Sage Foundation for Dogs Who Serve, the charity created by last year’s winning Search and Rescue Dog Sage! The Sage Foundation recognizes that many dogs provide hard, dangerous and loyal service beside their human handlers in wars, crime prevention, and both natural and man-made disasters. When these dogs are injured or fall ill, often as a direct result of their work, their services are terminated their fate is often uncertain. Some dogs are simply retired and if they are lucky enough to be adopted, the adoptive owner is faced with the cost of medical care for these dogs. The Sage Foundation for Dogs Who Serve’s mission is to promote the welfare of dogs who have faithfully served (often in harm’s way) in wars, police work, crime prevention, and rescue efforts through education and increased public awareness.