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Saturday, January 20, 2024

What is a Family Disaster Dog? It's Your Dog Trained to Rescue You!

 What is a family disaster dog? It is a dog trained to find and rescue you!

The Family Disaster Dog Book shows you how easy a pet dog of any age, size, or breed can be your very own search and rescue dog! Any size dog, from the little Chihuahua to the Great Dane, can help its owner survive...and they find you every day already when they want to play or eat, so why not learn what else they can do to help you!


One of our biggest fears and chores during a disaster is losing or finding a loved one, and every dog has the ability to find its family members or friends. We, as dog owners, only need to learn how to use the natural ability of the dog to the full advantage during emergencies.


The Family Disaster Dogs book is full of fun and easy lessons that are tailored for the family to learn disaster preparedness with pets, including search and rescue skills in the comfort of the home during daily activities by former Search Dog Instructor Amber Higgins, who spent over a decade breeding and training AKC Bloodhounds for nationwide Search and Rescue FEMA volunteer work along with German Shepherd Dogs.


Here's a few of the skills you and your dog can learn:


Ask any dog to find family members and friends who are lost or missing !


Learn how your dog can be a messenger dog !


How any size dog can carry extra supplies if you have to evacuate.


Learn how to pack and use a Dog Bug-out Bag with 3 days of survival supplies for you and your dog.


Teach your dog to alert you to danger and warning sirens with these easy at home lessons.


If you are trapped in an earthquake. Your dog can find you, dig you out or bring you first aid until rescuers arrive !


Send your dog for help or to your partner or child on command, it's easy to do with this book. 


Teach your dog to bring you items by name and much more !


Teach the whole family how to use the family dog as their own search and rescue dog in tornado, floods, earthquakes and to find lost loved ones !


Don't have a dog then this book is a great gift for a friend or neighbor who has a dog and they can come to your rescue too !


Use this book to form a neighborhood Family Disaster Dog group at church or clubs to help neighbors until emergency response arrives ! 






Be sure to have a look at the "My Puppy Can Find Me" children's picture book by Amber Higgins for young children and parents to learn what to do if a child is ever lost or missing. The children learn a fun game to play with the family dog to "go find mom or dad". Parents learn how to use their dog to find a child that wandered off or is missing. 


Sometimes first responders and the police are overwhelmed with calls for help and they may not reach you right away. 


Do you know what to do if help cannot reach you? What if the roads are blocked by high water or downed trees? What do you do if you cannot find a loved one? What if you are out camping and a family member gets lost and does not return to camp. Waiting for help to arrive often takes hours and during that time the person may go further away from camp, may get injured or worst. That is why I wrote these books. To help you help yourself and loved ones when help is not near. Time is critical when a person's life is at stake. 


If you have a dog in the family, these easy fun lessons will teach you and your dog what to do. These books have helped people all over the world to learn how to save a person's life. Why not have a look at the books and the 285 page Family Disaster Dogs blog ? 


I keep the four books free on audible and kindle so everyone can afford to be prepared and learn these valuable skills. Sharing this information with you at no cost is my mission, my way of helping communities worldwide. I spent many years training daily with my own dogs and volunteering to find missing person with county search and rescue squads. I learned a wealth of information during those years about emergency response and disasters, information that is not readily available to the public due to the amount of knowledge required and liability laws. That information is what I share with you, the public, and as a seasoned educated writer I try very hard to keep the lessons simple so even a child can learn. 







Have a look at the books on the book page in the page menu above or visit my author page at Amazon


If you do not use Amazon the books are available at book stores and retail outlets worldwide, a simple internet search will show you where. Please feel free to ask me for a copy  or to train in person if that is easier for you! I will be happy to meet with you anytime and work with your dog, just ask!








Thursday, January 18, 2024

Mantrailing Bloodhound History

Bloodhound History

My Sammy 1 yr old Bloodhound Mantrailer
all rights reserved Amber Higgins

Not long ago, the bloodhound was the only breed in the USA that was a Mantrailing dog. Which is a trailing type of hunting dog that is used for find living human beings who are on the move and not animals.

A Mantrailing dog follows the person's scent as the person moves and leaves a trail of scent. The dogs will go anywhere the person or scent has gone until the end of the trail or they find the person. Many times the person may no longer be living but the bloodhound will find the body because of the scent trail the person created. If a recently deceased body is moved the bloodhound will continue to follow the scent.

Other breeds are and were known as tracking dogs. And, the bloodhound was the only breed of dog that was allowed to be used to prove a person’s identity in a court of law.



Photo by A. Higgins all rights reserved

The phrase Mantrailing was first used by bloodhound handlers because the breed was used to trail people. Over time training standards and methods developed to be used to train newcomers how-to handle the breed. In the past, the breed was rarely only a pet and not long ago there were not many breeders across the USA, we as breeders either worked to find missing persons or to preserve the breed in the show ring. The breed was then considered a rare breed.

Here in America, the breed was first used to find runaway criminals and yes, runaway slaves back when the breed came with our founding fathers to build the USA. When Search and Rescue became an organized volunteer effort, the bloodhound and other breeds were used as search dogs.

Today in the USA, the incredible nose and stamina of the bloodhound continues to be used for “Mantrailing” with police and trained volunteer Search and Rescue teams.

In the last decade the breed has become more popular as a pet, although they are difficult to train in obedience and manners, and often are called stubborn because of the determination that has been bred into the breed to continue on a trail to find a missing person.

They really are not stubborn but very willing to please when they are not following their nose which they often do constantly because a good mantrailing dog is bred to do just that.

Photo A. Higgins-all rights reserved


Pictured above is my bloodhound Gus who I rescued last year after him and brother Sam were abandoned during very cold weather. They are young and still growing in these pictures

The bloodhound will follow a scent off a high mountain rock wall, up a train track even with a train coming at them because they are so focused on the scent its as if they are wearing blinders blocking out the surroundings.

The breed gets lost easily which is rather ironic because they find person but will get lost themselves. For this reason it’s always recommended to keep them leashed because once they find a scent they like to follow, away they go and many do not back track and find their way home. They will run for miles and finally when they stop they do not know where they are.

The name bloodhound is often thought to be given to the breed because they track or follow a blood trail. This is not true. The dogs are actually named a bloodhound because they were one of the first breeds of dogs that had a pedigree, Therefore it was a blue blooded hound or purebred.

The bloodhound was originally bred in a monastery in Belgium for over 700 years and the monks kept a pedigree of the dogs they bred, those dogs were called Saint Herbert Hounds. Back then the dogs were solid white. 

When explorers and travelers found the monastery, the monks would often give a pair of hounds to the travelers to take back to their own countries.

Consequently, the white hounds were considered quite sacred coming from the monks. When the dogs arrived in the other countries they were bred with local hounds and they lost their white coats. Slowly over time the breed became black and tans, liver and red in color. They also became known as the Bloodhound because they were a pure blooded hound.

If you would like to learn more about mantrailing, have a look at my books on the book page, I hope you enjoyed this post.

Happy trails to you in the new year, 

Amber Higgins

Founder and author of Family Disaster Dogs



Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Train Your Dogs Here

Train your Dogs to Rescue You and Family. 
How? 
Follow us on social media and sign-up for newsletters using the pop up by reloading this page! 
Be sure to check out the book page in the menu. 
The family disaster, dog books are free on Kindle and audible as my way of helping everyone be prepared with their pets. 


 

Author Amber Higgins

Author Amber Higgins
Click Pic to Visit my author page

Welcome UK and Worldwide Visitors

Welcome UK and worldwide visitors and friends to Family Disaster Dogs online! Although I'm an American author and dog professional the worldwide web has given me the opportunity to connect with some wonderful folks who have contributed pictures for my books. The "Start Mantrailing" book features RRI K9 North Scotland trained Search and Rescue Dog "Amber" on the cover and her teammates training in the book, plus American dogs using my training methods. A portion of sales of the Start Mantrailing book or copies were donated to RRI North Scotland. The children's picture book "My Puppy Can Find Me" has my daughter and bloodhound as illustrations by UK cartoonist Scotty King. You can find the books on Amazon UK or use the contact page to order from me. When you click the links will take you to your own county pages of this site.

Start Mantrailing Free Preview on Audible, Kindle and Paperback

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