Otto, SV Heli’s Avalanche Dog, retires from SAR work

Otto rests after helping KFD clear this slide which hit some homes

Mark Baumgardner’s avalanche search dog, Otto announces his retirement from active duty. Otto will remain “top dog” at the Idaho Smoky Mountain Lodge. Otto began training as a puppy and was active for 12 winters. He participated in many searches and was responsible for the quick recovery of a snowmobiler who perished in a Baker Creek avalanche in 2005. Otto and Mark attended 2 WBR (Wasatch Backcountry Rescue) dog team seminars, considered the finest training available in the US. Otto developed seizures this fall. The original diagnosis was a brain tumor, but later it was revealed that a stroke was the cause. He has recovered nicely, with a little loss of stamina but so far seizure free. We will continue to train this winter as it is a great “game” and there may be a few things we can teach the younger dog teams. Thanks, Otto, best partner, ever!

Be Sociable, Share!