Tag Archives: search and rescue dogs


13 Feb

Trifecta – a run of three wins or grand events.

Kate Messner might have created the perfect novel for kids ready to move beyond  The Magic Treehouse  series.


Ranger in Time: Rescue on the Oregon Trail has a golden retriever, the Oregon Trail and time travel!

Summary: Ranger has been trained as a search-and-rescue dog, but can’t officially pass the test because he’s always getting distracted by squirrels during exercises. One day, he finds a mysterious first aid kit in the garden and is transported to the year 1850, where he meets a young boy named Sam Abbott. Sam’s family is migrating west on the Oregon Trail, and soon after Ranger arrives he helps the boy save his little sister. Ranger thinks his job is done, but the Oregon Trail can be dangerous, and the Abbotts need Ranger’s help more than they realize!

I think I might read this one aloud when we get to out Oregon trail Unit, unless I can get the funds to buy a novel set. When we studied Lewis & Clark, we looked at a number of books that told the story from the POV of Lewis’ dog, Seaman.

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The kids really connected to Seaman and I think they will do the same with Ranger. The story itself is only 125 pages long and it is illustrated in detail by Kelly McMorris. Backmatter includes an author’s note about using primary sources, a bibliography of sources and suggestions for further reading. This would be an excellent addition to any class that studies westward expansion.

Search and Rescue

3 Dec

Hard to believe it looking at me now, as I teeter on the edge of 50, but I spent a large part of my teen & young adult years as a lifeguard. That, combined with teaching swimming lessons at all levels, made me decide to become a teacher.

In Mountain Dog a novel in verse by Margarita Engle,


Tony is sent to the mountains to live with his great uncle, Tio Leo because his mother has been sent to prison for keeping pit bulls and holding dog fights. This has left Tony scarred. But his Tio Leo is a gentle man who works in search & rescue with his dog, Gabe. In alternating voices, Tony and Gabe tell the story of Tony’s transition from scared  boy with an uncertain future, to a young man who sees his purpose in  life. The  black and white illustrations, by Olga and Aleksey Ivanov, added nicely to the story.

A good read for kids 8-12 who love animal books.

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