Huntsville Search Dog Unit (HSDU) is an all-volunteer search and rescue K9 unit based in Huntsville, Alabama. HSDU trains and maintains certifications for three disciplines of search and rescue K9s: land and water human remains detection, area search, and man-trailing. HSDU can assist in searches for missing persons (alive or deceased) in wilderness, rough terrain, urban, disaster, and water settings. We also regularly assist multiple law enforcement agencies in searches for missing persons and/or evidence in cold cases.
HSDU works with local, state and federal agencies. Our K9 handlers and support personnel receive extensive training in search operations and theory, traditional search methods, and in air scent and scent discrimination. All personnel are also required to maintain certifications from the National Association for Search and Rescue to ensure all responding personnel have the necessary skills and fitness levels required for field performance. We also have certified EMTs and Paramedics volunteering for HSDU.
Additional support personnel from HSDU respond to assist with search operations and logistics. Each member is paged for rapid notification and responds with sufficient equipment and supplies to ensure self-sufficiency with their K9 partner in a rescue/disaster environment for an extended period of time. HSDU operates in cooperation with other agencies and follows FEMA protocols as part of the total rescue operation.
HSDU will respond to any location at the request of the local, state, or federal authority. With our unique skills, the Huntsville Search Dog Unit stands ready to assist any person or agency upon request as a public service without compensation.
HSDU is a 501(c) 3 non-profit