Canine search teams on their way to Haiti

Haiti: 48 Hours later (Boston Globe photo essay).


Digby has more on what’s happening in Haiti now in her post “Hell on Earth
.

To help the people of Haiti, I recommend donating to Partners in Health.

Here’s an interview/discussion with Tracy Kidder from public radio station WAMC, in which Kidder talks about this organization (and why supporting them right now might be better than supporting others who either had their Haitian infrastructure destroyed – like Doctors Without Borders – or who have not demonstrated a good track record in getting emergency donations to Haitian people).

Working dogs are also helping:

Haiti Earthquake Emergency Response Include Dogs: Canine Disaster Search Teams Rescue Survivors in Port-au-Prince

Six Canine Disaster Search Teams from the Los Angeles County Task Force 2 (CA-TF2) are just a small part of emergency response efforts enroute to Haiti. Trained by the National Disaster Search Dog Foundation for just such an event as the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that devastated the island, the dogs and their handlers stood ready to respond. The Los Angeles County Task Force 2, is one of two internationally deployable FEMA Task Forces in the United States. The other is Virginia Task Force 1.

…Hunter is a 7 year old male Border Collie from California. He and Bill Monahans passed their DHS/FEMA Certification test in 2006 and responded to the Metrolink crash in Chatsworth, California in 2008.

Baxter is a 5 year old male Golden Retriever from Homeward Bound Rescue & Sanctuary. Gary Durian and Baxter passed their FEMA Certification in 2008 and searched for survivors in the aftermath of Hurricanes Gustav and Ike.

Pearl is a 4 year old female black Lab from High Sierra Animal Rescue. Ron Horetski and Pearl passed their FEMA Certification in May 2009 and responded to a building collapse in La Puente, California the following July.

Cadillac is a 4 year male black Lab from Guide Dogs for the Blind. Jasmine Segura and Cadillac earned the FEMA Certification in 2008.

Maverick is an 8 year old male German Shepherd from New Mexico. Jason Vasquez and Maverick passed their FEMA Certification in 2007 and responded to the disaster after Hurricanes Gustav and Ike.

Dawson is an 8 year old male Border Collie from California. Dawson is a special dog with FEMA certification in rescue as well as recovery. He and handler Ron Weckbacher have extensive experience assisting in hurricane relief and missing person searches.

…Elite canine teams, highly skilled in navigation of cramped confines and detecting survivors, flew out of Virginia, Canada, Spain, France, Netherlands, Taiwan and China on January 13, to help with emergency rescue efforts.

Not much word yet on the animals trapped, killed and wounded in the quake. The Humane Society issued this initial statement:

Humane Society International and The Humane Society of the United States are working with other animal welfare and humanitarian organizations to determine how best to assist animals and people affected by the disaster.

We have offered our support in providing care to affected animals and will post updates as they become available.

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