Homage to the 9/11 Search and Rescue Dogs
It’s hard to believe 10 years have elapsed since the attacks on the world trade center; it’s a heartbreaking slice of our history and no matter where you were, you’ll always remember exactly where you were, when you heard the news.
The old adage, “Man’s Best Friend” was coined in 1870 and throughout history dogs have proven this true. Again and again they show what an asset they are to us. A dog is a dog first and a pet second. Dogs behave the way they do for specific reasons.They possess speed and strength, a problem solving brain and a sniffer 1000 times more sensitive than our own.
Dogs have contributed to man in countless ways, as hunters, herders, seeing eyes for the blind, family protectors, companion animals and assisters to the police and military. Their contributions range from small (that boisterous force that gets you off the couch and makes you exercise when you are dead tired) to monumental (sniffing out 3 little girls trapped under concrete for five days after the earthquake in Haiti). Dogs bring people together and enrich our lives with unconditional love. They are a mixture of super strong seeing, smelling, running, jumping, climbing machines paired with huge, loyal hearts and an uncompromising desire to protect us and make us happy.
There were many heroes that day, as well as in the days to come and even still to this day. As first responders, more than 300 dogs and handler teams showed up from the National Search Dog Foundation, as well as from all over the U.S. to help comb through the wreckage. The dogs could fit in places their handlers could not. I am always in awe when I look at pictures showing the rescue workers in helmets, gas masks, boots, knee pads, gloves, and full body suits and beside them a dog, wearing nothing but a collar….
I am grateful to the groups that put their time, effort and money into utilizing the great gift of dog. To the individuals that look out for their best interests and keep them safe and healthy. For example, last week I heard about a company who is working to supply every fire station in every city with pet oxygen masks, a kit with masks to fit a variety of snouts, so that we can save dogs and cats, just like they save us.
Nona Bauer has put together a tribute book honoring the Rescue Dogs of 9/11. A portion of the profits from the sale of the book benefit the National Search Dog Foundation. Get yourself a box of tissues and prepare to be inspired!