County search and rescue team adds air scent dog

SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. – A 4-year-old Australian Shepherd named MacGyver is Santa Barbara County Search and Rescue team’s newest member. 

MacGyver and his handler, Rick Stein, received their certifications through California Rescue Dog Association. The long process was not only expensive, but it required a lot of determination. MacGyver and Stein are one of 7 deployable Type 1 CARDA Area Certified K-9 teams in California. 

Since 2013, Stein spent more than $12,000 of his own money to get MacGyver certified. He has driven approximately 3,000 miles annually and trained about 350 hours annually for formal K9 trainings. Stein has been a part of Search and Rescue, an all-volunteer team for 15 years.

For 10 years, Stein handled and worked with his dog Kody who was also certified in Area Search and Human Remains Detection. Kody was successful in locating many people during the searches. Kody passed away when he was 14.5 years old. 

Reporter Vicky Nguyen spoke to Stein about the training process and his hopes for MacGyver. Vicky will have a live report at 10:00 p.m. on KKFX and 11:00 p.m. on KEYT. Check back later for additional information.

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