The tragedy of the attacks on 9/11 have stuck with America for years. But a recent trip to New York brought the efforts of the search and rescue k-9's to my attention.
Dogs were very important in the efforts to locate victims trapped beneath the rubble. Using their sense of smell they helped workers locate victims. Another 300 assistance dogs were used to comfort victims and rescue workers that were on the front lines of the rescue efforts.
Popular breeds for these search and rescue efforts included German Shepherds, Australian Shepherds, Golden Retrievers and many more. These dogs typically worked 16 hour days for 7 to 14 days.
The effects of this event have impacted the animals as well. From the more then 350 rescue dogs used for support and search and rescue only 12 are still alive, according to a report done in early 2011. The toxic gases that were released at the scene and the stress of the event are both possible reasons for this.
We truly appreciate the efforts of the men and women that helped to save so many lives during the 9/11 rescue efforts. But please dont' forget about the courageous k-9's that did so much for so many.