About SAR Sport
Search and Rescue Sport, often simply referred to as Search and Rescue (SAR) sport, is a recreational and competitive activity that simulates real-life search and rescue operations using trained dogs and handlers. It is not an actual search and rescue mission but rather a sport designed to showcase the skills and abilities of search and rescue teams and their canine partners.
The primary goals of SAR sport are to:
1. Test Canine Skills: SAR sport provides a platform for search and rescue dogs to demonstrate their tracking, scent detection, and obedience skills in controlled environments.
2. Build Teamwork: It fosters teamwork and effective communication between handlers and their canine partners, emphasizing the importance of the human-canine bond in real search and rescue scenarios.
3. Improve Training: SAR sport allows handlers to practice and refine their dogs' abilities in a variety of search scenarios, from wilderness to urban settings.
4. Promote Safety: By conducting mock search scenarios, SAR sport helps identify potential safety issues and allows teams to improve their safety protocols.
5. Provide Recognition: Handlers and their dogs can earn certifications and titles based on their performance in SAR sport trials, recognizing their dedication and proficiency.
Why Join Our Club?
We're proud to be the pioneers! Nordik K9 is the ONLY training group offering this exhilarating sport anywhere in Canada that we know of. We provide a whopping 3 hours of training per week with our professional trainers. Our season stretches from April to October, giving you over 84 hours of collaborative training—all included in a single membership. No matter your dog's breed or your skill level, you're welcome here. You don't need to be a search and rescue technician to be passionate about the work and training involved to participate.
Area Search & Scent Detection
Lvl 1, 2, 3
Area search involves training dogs to search for missing persons in large, open areas, both urban and wilderness. Dogs are taught to work methodically and cover a designated search area. Training includes teaching dogs to indicate the presence of a scent source (e.g., a missing person) and alert their handler. Handlers learn to read their dog's behavior and work as a team to search effectively. Search patterns, navigation, and handling skills are essential components of area search training. There is also a component of scent detection which includes a smaller area for a specific article or scent.
Lvl 1, 2, 3
Tracking training involves teaching dogs to follow scent trails left by a missing person. Dogs are introduced to scent discrimination, where they learn to identify the unique scent of the missing person. Handlers learn to read their dog's tracking behavior, such as changes in pace and body language. Training may include various tracking scenarios, including urban and wilderness environments.
Obedience & Dexterity
Lvl 1, 2, 3
Obedience training focuses on teaching dogs’ essential commands and behaviors required for search and rescue work. Commands typically include sit, stay, recall, heel, down, and retrieve. However, in SAR, dogs must also show dexterity over logs, under objects, up ladders and more. Dogs must respond reliably to their handler's commands, even in distracting or stressful situations. Obedience training ensures that dogs can work under control and maintain focus during search missions.
While SAR sport is a valuable training tool for search and rescue teams, it is important to distinguish it from actual search and rescue missions conducted by professional SAR organizations. Real search and rescue operations involve life-saving efforts to locate and assist missing or injured persons, often under challenging and dangerous conditions. SAR sport participants typically engage in activities like tracking, area search, obedience, and scent detection, all of which simulate elements of actual search and rescue work. The specific rules, standards, and trial requirements for SAR sport may vary depending on the organization or association that hosts the events, such as the American Rettungshunde Sport Association (ARSA). Unfortunately we are not able to be under the umbrella of the FCI (Federation Cynologique Internationale) at this time, perhaps one day if we can get things off the ground, we’ll be there. There is also the opportunity to perhaps have members become members of the ARSA if they so choose.