For its 50th anniversary, the Swiss Association for Search and Rescue Dogs (Redog) organized an international training week for the search for buried subjects. This week in the training center of the rescue troops in Epeisses in the municipality of Avully is also dedicated to the exchange of knowledge.
Around 40 people have been completing this training with their dogs since Saturday. In addition to the 16 participants from Switzerland, there are 21 people from Germany, four from Japan, three from Denmark, one from Slovenia and one from Ukraine, as Dagmar Wurzbacher, communications manager at Redog, told the Keystone-SDA news agency on Tuesday. The special thing is that all course participants continue their education and work on a voluntary basis.
One Hundred Thousand Hours of Volunteering
Redog has around 580 active members who train in twelve regional groups throughout Switzerland to help people in need, for example under rubble, as quickly as possible. In this way, according to their own statements, they volunteer more than 100,000 hours a year.
Along with the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit, the Swiss Red Cross and the army, the organization is one of the founding members of the federal rescue chain. This chain can be quickly deployed abroad in the event of disasters such as earthquakes.
Although dogs have been pets and companions of humans for thousands of years, their abilities have only been used systematically to search for buried people since the beginning of the 20th century.