One week left

Next week our newest pack member will be coming home. Ms Raina Uptown Girl Com Franzosisch. I have had the privilege to watch Raina grow up over the last 2 months and mature into a wonderful German Shepherd pup. At 4 weeks old she was the first female pup to jump off the side of the porch into the unknown. She has the hardest bite drawing blood from at least one person so far. She loves to play tug, likes to sleep on her back, and enjoys play fighting with her brothers and sisters. She is calm and confident, she believes in herself and enjoys exploring any new world she is in. She is going to be a wonderful search dog.  She is a lover, but do not get me wrong she is also a fighter. We cannot wait to see how she meshes into the pack, and how she develops her own personality.

Raina Uptown Girl Vom Französisch Wald

Raina will be a tough girl, and i hope that she and Eme keep each other on their toes.  While i was excited to be out of the puppy stage (eme is just about 9 months) i know it is well worth going through it again. Raina and Eme are half sisters, they have the same father just different mother. Raina’s mother is also a certified NYS Federation search and rescue dog for airscent and Cadaver. She is also certified through IPWDA International Police Working Dog Assocication and STPWD Southern Tier Police Working Dog for Cadaver.  This is a repeat breeding, the first litter is 2 and a half now and 3 of the pups are certified search dogs 3 went to law enforcement homes and the other in a pet home.  Raina has amazing genetics and is going to be a great working dog. Keep an eye on her accomplishments!

Raina 5 days old

Thanksgiving is a time for

Remembering everything you have and appreciating it to the fullest. Life can go any number of ways and we must embrace who and what we have in our lives and never forgot how quick it can be taken away from us.


While i don’t have much real family close to me i have good friends, coworkers, teammates, husband, and my amazing pack of dogs.  I have wonderful family i get to see a few times a year and i appreciate every moment with them.  I am so thankful and happy for the roles that everyone play in my life, I would not be me without each of them. Happy thanksgiving and here is to a great holiday season.

Busy weekend

Friday brought a trip down to Rita’s to see the puppies and have kevin meet them for the first time.  5 weeks old and counting and they are irresistible!  Playing non stop and being crazy is what they do. My favorite Yellow girl cuddled up and dragged toys over to me all night long. She really is making me fall in love with her! She is very drivey, has a great bite, and loves to play tug.

Future culver canine copilot pack member??

Yellow girl or “Mustang Sally” as her nick name has been since birth is a sweetheart and on the top of my favorite list. Of course i do also love pink girl or “Diva” as she was the pup who was delivered dry, i had to pull out and give mouth to mouth to.

Diva girl

And of course the favorite boy in the group is green boy or “Bear” who kevin loves because of his huge fluffy coat and stoner personality!!

Bear the stoner!

The following day i traveled down to Long Island, howard beach to be exact to help my team Eagle Valley Search Dogs look for a missing man in a creepy 80 acre preserve in his neighborhood.  After getting lost in harlem i finally made it over all the stupid bridges and to LI. Stepping over humane feces, animal heads from sacrifices, shoes, glass, stolen atv’s and burned out jeep cherokee’s in the ocean we personally covered almost 7 miles through bamboo reeds over 10 feet high. The worst part was the one clearing under a bunch of dead trees that had duck tape and rope constructions of a swing, chair, and bed and a huge deep hole in the middle with a shovel sticking out. I think we argued over who was going to look into the hole first hoping there wasn’t a body in it! Of course it was just a creepy hole, with old glass bottles all over dug up and a chest full of bones.


Moral of the post…………stay outta long island.

Play time in the cool

Eme and i took to the paths this afternoon with some treats and a water wubba. We practiced some obedience, particularly her sit, stay and down. We played tug of war and fetch with her wubba and i hid it on her a few times to get her some nose work. She has come such a long way over the past few months. Her search skills are amazing, this weekend at Karens we did a night problem. The air was calm and cool and not much wind. About 5 minutes into the problem eme takes off and I know she has scent. She is so easy to read when she is working live as she will not leave my eye sight unless she has scent. Sure enough a minute later the radio beeped and Bob had been found. Eme was hundreds of feet away from me, in the dark, through thick  brush with little wind. AMAZING!!!

We are working on her refind and she is doing well. I call her back, ask her for a bark and she takes off like a rocket back to the subject, she is getting the picture and she is only 8 months old.

On another note a quick visit friday to Rita’s brought about some new puppy pictures! Not sure which one will be mine but they are all cute. Just 4 weeks old and irresistible!!

Sleeping puppies











First trip outside!!!

Rip and pups outside!











As for me, well this weekend was tough. I took my DEC Crew Boss class and sunday proved to be a difficult test of my navigation. I was given a map and 4 instructions of various points i needed to find, navigate to document my success. All i had was the map, a compass and my feet. No food, no water and 4 miles of catskill mountains i have never been in.  Hours later i completed my assignment, found my points and passed my class!!!! I’m certified now as a Crew Boss and can lead a crew of men and women at searches freeing up DEC Forest Rangers to help the search in other ways.  I was proud of my navigation and my ability to stay calm while “lost” in the woods. I have come a long way myself in the last 2 years since i joined SAR and i cannot wait to see what the next 2 years bring!

Disaster Seminar

The weekend of October 24th Amigo SAR dogs hosted a disaster seminar in Warren Center PA with FEMA K9 handler and instructor Theresa MacPherson. It was a wonderful introduction to a rubble pile and bark barrel which Eme had never been trained on! She learned to do a bark and hold at a subject and we still worked her refind in wilderness and got some great ones in!



We are working the go out here which eme picked up quick having never done it!







The weekend was wonderful and we had 13 dogs from 3 different teams around NY, PA and NJ.  The focus all week was getting the dogs on different footing, elevated platforms, and over unstable surfaces.  Obedience and some plain old wildnerness work tied it all together.


Bark Barrell

Bark Barrell

Eme working her first bark barrell. She caught on quick and loved the game.








While i’m not sure i have time or Eme would really enjoy rubble work it was nice to get an idea of what its like, work with a FEMA instructor and maybe in a few years when i’ve caught up i can get on the local task force!

All in all we had a great time like always training to save lives. What else would i ever want to do on my weekends??


Me and my girl

After the weekend was over we helped pick up and took the dogs out for a hike and let them swim in the pond. Eme put what she learned to good use when we hit the quarry to exercise the dogs.


Found her own pile