The unsung heroes of Nepal Earthquake: Meet the rescue dogs

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Kathmandu, May 5: The NDRF, Indian, Nepalese, Chinese, Israeli, the US and the UK forces have joined hands in the relief and rescue mission of Nepal.

They have toiled to reach the relief material to the remotest of villages and pulled out survivors from under the rubble. But, we cannot forget the contribution of the quadruped who made the entire operation successul-the army Dogs.

Rescue dog

DFID (Department of International Development), which was the first to send a search and rescue team at Kathmandu after the earthquake on April 25, sent some of its specially trained dogs who have been taught to track human scent, especially in crisis situation.

When someone is discovered under the rubble, their body language lets the trainer know.

[Read: Did animals signal the earthquake?]

'Stick' it up

According to the rescue agency, each dog handler sticks to his dog as they share a special relationship. The dogs too have to be quick-witted and love to chase toys as that is how they are trained for crisis situations.

Rescue Dogs 2

The search and rescue Dog kit

But you cannot just let a dog out there without any protection. A statement by the above-mentioned department reveals that full precaution is being taken to safeguard the dog from heat, glasses and rubbles.

Lift Harness: This is used to attach the dog to the handler while working on higher altitudes or exposed edges. THis also helps both of them to be lowered together.

[Read: Nepal quake: Did animals sense the earthquake?]

High Visibility Outer: This helps the dog in being sighted easily by the handler among the rubble. The Bell helps the handler in tracing the dog's movement when it is out of sight.

Boots: High or low boots are being used to protect the Dog from shards of metal, glasses or stones in the debris.

Harness: The harness has a bell, torch, and glowstick attached so that the dog can be sighted when it is in the dark.

Cool Jacket: Filled with water, this jacket helps in keeping the Dogs cool in Nepal's warmer areas. The water inside evaporates as the dog works, while the reflective surface is helpful for dar-coloured dogs who absorb more heat.

rescue dog

Shelter and stray Dogs, messiahs

The National Disaster Search Dog Foundation, which had sent a team of six Dogs and handlers for the rescue operations in Nepal, revealed that four of the six dogs were pulled out from a shelter who were having trouble finding a home.

The agency further said that these Dogs could make difficult pets because of their drive and energy level. But they were chosen for a greater cause because of these very characteristics.

In fact, some of them have a splendid history of rescuing people in crisis. According to the Huffington Post, a lab Pearl was pulled out from a shelter in California and was working for the fire department in Los Angeles. It also found survivors in the 2010 Haiti earthquake and then came to Nepal to find survivors here.

Another Dog, Riley, did a splendid job in tracking Tsunami survivors in Japan.

[Read: Help Nepal! List of NGOs assisting earthquake assistance and relief]

Yumenosuke, a Japanese stray dog shares a similar story. Rescued from Hiroshima, this four year old found the reason to live; he is now on a mission to save lives in Nepal.

Some, abandoned by their owners for their erratic behaviour, now have a reason to live and cherish. Indeed! what happens, happens for the best. ON our part, all we can do is appreciate these heroes who did a greater job in rescuing lives in such crisis situation.

OneIndia News

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