In the year 1999 Is was approached by a paramedic whom had an idea to train a team of dogs and ambulance officer handlers. He had gained approval from upper management for this team to be explored and actioned, I was the chosen trainer.
We started the team small and had 2 springer spaniels which we started to train to locate live but injured or traped patients in all disaster type situations. We had to be trained to work out of rescue helicopters and boats and to be able to rappel down buildings, out of helicopters, down structures or cliffs with the dogs on our chests on our safety harnesses. we received some great publicity and tv storeys and in the year 2000 I received the Volunter of the year award and medal.
I wanted to dual use the dogs in the aged care wards and children's wards in hospitals as there was so much training to be always prepared and we were ever hopefull a disaster dog team would never be needed in QLD.
The dogs did many visits and were exemplary in their behaviour and all the hospitals management and staff were very glad to have them visit. This was my second time of being involved in therapy dogs as we did help cavaliers are wonderful support CAWS on the Sunshine Coast in the late 80's.