Horses added to Allegan County Search and Rescue Team

Posted at 11:02 PM, Oct 14, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-14 23:02:17-04

ALLEGAN COUNTY, Mich. - Horses are being saddled up for a search and rescue team in Allegan County. Originally part of the Allegan Sheriff's Mounted Division, now horses are working with the Allegan County Search and Rescue Team.

Wednesday was their first day of training with ACSART off 140th Avenue in Dorr Township.

ACSART Capt. Ronald Miller said his team of 23 specializes in backwoods searches using GPS and compass course grid searching to find missing persons. Now the team is using horses.

"Anything that moves or is out of place, the horses will pick it up, because their nose is just about as good as a regular dogs," said Capt. Miller. "And their eye sights a whole lot better than ours."

The team trains the horses by playing a little game of hide and seek by hiding rags in a field. The horses then use their finely tuned noses. Wednesday's training session was a success after the horses located all three hidden rags.

"And we’ll all three work together on a search, no cost to the people who have the missing person," said Capt. Miller. "We’ll gladly go and do what we need to do to help the police and fire departments."

Since The Allegan County Search and Rescue Team is strictly volunteer, they're hosting a benefit concert starring David Frizzell November 21, 7:30 p.m., at Allegan High School Performing Arts Center. For tickets, call 800-445-2143.