Our search and rescue dog capability is focused on developing highly trained teams to save lives.

We are looking for people preferably with skills in emergency services (volunteer or paid), defence force, or dog handling.  We are also interested in people with skills and experience that can support the work we do.

For dog handlers, there is significant effort required to train your dog. Progressive assessment criteria need to be met within designated timeframes.

Our members need to be highly motivated and committed, and able to self-learn to achieve specific goals without relying solely on group training.

Most search dog teams take on average 12 – 18 months to become fully qualified.

In a search response, our teams will often be deployed at short notice, so availability and flexibility with your time is a key requirement. Please check this commitment with your family/employer before you apply.

Teamwork and respect are critical, both within the squad and the larger inter-agency response. We seek team players, who can take instruction and behave professionally and compassionately.

Finally, we are not a dog club, or an opportunity to promote a dog-related business. We are emergency service volunteers with people counting on our trained teams to save lives. 

Do you have what it takes to become a search dog team?

The handler and dog application process is shown below and outlines a number of specific steps.

If you are interested in applying to join the squad in another role that is not as a handler and dog team then please perform Steps 1 – 3.

Our handler intake numbers will be limited whilst we build the new squad’s capabilities. We ask that you are honest in the information that you provide during the application process.

The Application Process for Handlers and Dogs