Your family disaster dog can be a
huge asset in the event that you are ever trapped or separated from your loved
ones. For instance, after a tornado or earthquake when rubble is everywhere and
you may be unable to reach a family member or them you because of debris in the
way. Your dog can go under or over the wreckage to deliver supplies or messages
between you and your family.
Military and war dogs are trained as
messenger dogs and many have honored as a hero after running through
explosives, gunfire, and razor wire in order to deliver a message between soldiers.
Your family dog can be your hero too by simply following the lessons here at
Family Disaster Dogs.
You can send your dog to locate a
loved one and carry a first aid kit, food or water. Be sure to include a pen
and paper in your dog’s go-bag backpack so the other person can write you a
message and you can send messages back and fourth.
Also, include a dog tag on your dog’s
collar and a luggage tag on the backpack that says, ” send dog- say ”Return” or the command you will teach your dog in this
lesson. Be sure all of your friends and family members know the command to send
your dog to you and other people. Write instructions on a note that is in a clear
plastic cover and attached to your dogs backpack so people will be able to use
your dog to find you if you are ever unconscious and trapped.
You will teach this lesson after your
dog has learned to retrieve or fetch in the previous lessons and as you
practice the fetch lessons you will incorporate this lesson into your sessions
teaching your dog to carry objects on command by asking your dog to keep a hold
of the object they retrieved as you walk with your dog tell your dog to “carry”.
This lesson will use 2 people and
basically what you do is send your dog back and fourth between yourself and
another person by using “Come” (click for lesson) and “Return” or “Go-To” then later after your
dog is doing this exercise you will ask your dog to carry an object to the
other person and they ask the dog to return to you with a the item or a new
Start out with the other person close
by, within sight of you and about 30 paces or steps away from you.
Ask them to call your dog and
immediately you will command your dog to “Go to name”. If the person is
somebody your dog knows, be sure to use the person’s name so your dog will
learn to go to them by name.
If the person is not somebody you
will be finding in a real event then you do not have to use the name because
your dog will learn to find any human being if you send them out to “Go” to a
person. They will look for a person until they find one.
You can even teach your dog at this
point to go to people dressed or smelling a certain way, such as a person
dressed in an army uniform instead of civilian clothes. The dog will learn to only
go to those in that uniform and not another uniform if no other uniform or
smell is used during training.
Drug dogs can be taught to go to a
person smelling like the drug, explosive dogs can learn to indicate a person
who smells like they have been in the same room as the explosive materials used
in bombs. A dog can be taught to go to
find food, water or shelter if these items are gradually added into this lesson
one at a time by command.
After you send your dog to the other
person and when your dog reaches the other person, the person will praise your
dog then send the dog back to you using the “Return” or another command you
want. At the same time you will call your dog to “Come” and praise when your
dog comes back to you.
Repeat this 4 or 5 times, make it fun
and keep it fun. If your dog becomes bored with this game and stops to look at
you like “hey, why don’t you two people walk to each other instead of me running”
then it is up to you to make this game more interesting.
Change Locations often when Training a Dog
Change locations by having the other
person move off to the side from where they were the first time so your dog has
to look for them to make the game more challenging. Add toys and move about the
yard to change the course, you can throw a ball between each other and release
the dog using the commands to add variety to the game.
In no time your dog will be going
between you and another person on command. Then you can add a third person as yourself;
while you stand on the sideline and have your dog go between 2 other people as
you use the commands to work your dog.
If you use the people’s names then
your dog will learn to go between those people in a crowd. Eventually, you can
teach your dog the name of everybody in the house, club or group and have your
dog carry items back and fourth. Just like service dogs that retrieve items for
disabled people your dog can get you items too if you teach your dog the name.
Don’t forget to put the Dog Go-Bag back pack on your dog and practice using it to carry items between people. Some
dogs are better at carrying items a long distance in their mouths then others
and the backpack can carry much more then one dog’s mouth.
Your dog will be very proud to carry
items for you and you will be able to see the joy in how they work this lesson.
Once they have reached the stage of working this lesson well, you can add this
skill to the tracking and trailing lessons.
To do so follow these steps, after
your dog finds a person by tracking or trailing, the dog returns to handler
then you give the dog the first aid kit and send the dog back to the person.
The person takes the first aid kit, praises your dog and commands your dog to go-to
you and your dog comes back for you to follow them to the person.
Now that your dog knows people by
name and how to go-to, you can do the same lesson in reverse, where you hide
and ask a person to tell your dog to find you in case you are ever missing.
Your wife or family member can ask the dog to, “ Go-to you by name”, your dog will find you.
If you are unconscious and unable to
speak to your dog, because of this training the dog will try to “alert” you, if
that does not work then your dog will return to who sent him to bring them to
you. All of the training in all of these lessons fit together to teach your dog
a whole mission of tasks that are possible to do in the event of an emergency.
Always have a person use your name
when sending your dog back to you or a code name, such as handler, so that one
word means YOU. Then your dog will find you only. This is very important lesson
for your dog to learn in case you are ever missing.
These lessons teach the dog how to
think like a person in order to communicate with us and help us. We are not
only teaching the dog to do as we say but to think for us to find our family
members or to save our life.
In the next lesson we will go over
how to teach your dog to find you in more detail.
All the previous lessons can be found at this lesson page. and on the page tab on the left side of this page.
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