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Sunday, October 19, 2014

Labrador 'Bosh' Awarded Medal at Coast Guard Rites

On a day which traditionally honors Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) officers and personnel for their exemplary services, a Labrador named “Bosh” stole the spotlight for its role in the agency’s search and rescue (SAR) operations in Bohol that was struck by devastating earthquake last year.
The dog drew considerable attention from everyone, including President Benigno Aquino III, as the breakout star of the 113th PCG anniversary celebration yesterday.
“Bosh was responsible for the retrieval of four bodies buried under landslides caused by an earthquake in Bohol,” said Petty Officer 3 Zandro Fred Jizmundo.
The Labrador, one of the canines that underwent a 10-month training at the PCG K-9 Unit training facility in Taguig City, received the SAR medal and ribbon.
He was one of the the 25 PCG awardees and drew the most attention from the media.
The dog graduated last year and was trained for the Coast Guard K-9 Unit on SAR and cadaver search together with Hermes, a Belgian Malinois; Buddy and German, Golden Retrievers; Mica, a Belgian Malinois; and Puppy, a German Shepherd.
Jizmundo said Bosh is no stranger to search and rescue work and his deployment in Bohol was his second.
“He had already joined in the search and rescue operation in Compostela Valley where 14 cadavers were recovered,” the dog’s handler said.
The PCG started to train dogs in 2001 for rescuing survivors and locating bodies of victims to expand their expertise beyond sniffing out explosives and illegal drugs.
From 10 canines, Coast Guard spokesman Commander Armand Balilo said the number of their working dogs in K-9 unit expanded to 205 to help in their operations.
“They are important to the Coast Guard. Aside from search and rescue, they have many accomplishments such as detecting illegal drugs and chemicals,” he said.
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