Organization Description & History

Founded in 1981, New England K-9 Search & Rescue is an all-volunteer wilderness K-9 search & rescue organization of 15-20 members. We provide life-saving assistance at no cost to the citizens and law enforcement agencies of Vermont and New Hampshire. We respond to nearly 50 searches a year for lost elderly, children and hikers.

Our handlers cover all their personal expenses: dog care [food, health], outdoor equipment, and travel costs for training and searches. We specialize in hasty response – meaning our teams are on the road within 15 minutes of call-out. In addition to wilderness lost-person searches, we train for local disaster response for live and dead victims whether it is a dam collapse where we search debris, a snow-collapsed shopping center, or a serious flood. All our dogs are trained to find victims whether living or deceased – whether on land, drowned, or buried under snow or debris.

In addition to our primary role as a search & rescue organization, New England K-9 Search & Rescue has made a strong commitment to educating children and adults about outdoor safety. We reach over 1500 school children yearly with presentations, search demonstrations with our dogs, and take home “Lost Proofing” literature. These programs are provided free of charge by our members.