Newest member of Northamptonshire rescue team will help track missing persons
Northamptonshire Search and Rescue (NSAR) has welcomed its first qualified search dog to the team.
Handler Ian Horton and search dog Ted have been training for 21 months and passed the national assessment exam in Epping Forest last week.
Ted will be on call 24 hours a day and will help Northamptonshire Police with missing person searches.
An NSAR spokesman said: "It’s well known that dogs are fantastic assets to searches offering speed and efficiency when each second counts.
"Ted may be the first search dog in the county but he is by no means the last."
He added: "Ted has conducted exactly 100 training sessions and over 300 hours in preparation.
"It’s a long process but totally worth it to help those lost and missing."
The team are currently training two new air scenting dogs - Blaze and Obie - and a trailing dog, Indi.
Indi will help track a specific human scent from a place where they were last seen.
Obie and Blaze, like Ted, can track stationary human smell.
The NSAR team, who are all volunteers, said they are delighted to have Ted among their ranks.
"The addition of Ted as an asset to the search team is huge.
"We know the work that’s gone into this and we know he’s going to prove invaluable when the time comes,"
NSAR currently has 44 qualified members and are training another six.
The team is staffed entirely by volunteers and funded by donations and fundraising.
It's working to fund a replacement for its ICU and 4x4 response vehicle.