These handlers and dogs are operational and respond to incidents.

(Cockermouth MRT)
Air Scenting Graded Dog Team

Assessor & Deputy Call Out Coordinator
Stage 4
Mike and his Border Collie Dog Marty have moved swiftly though their assessments and were graded in Langdale after a 4 hour search in ‘character building’ conditions. Marty was named by Mike’s son who has a fascination with the ‘Back to the Future’ film. Marty, who comes from working sheep dog parents on the West Coast, is very playful and is obsessed with his ‘tuggy’ toy. Marty responded well to the challenges of assessment, having grown into a powerful and rangy dog. Mike has been involved in mountain rescue in the Lakes since he was 18 as a member, then a Team Leader within the Wasdale Mountain Rescue Team. A move to the North in early 2017 now has him wearing a blue jacket with the Cockermouth Team. Mike is also an Advanced Swiftwater Rescue Technician Instructor for LDSAMRA.

Kendal MRT
Air Scenting Graded Dog Team
Dave is the Team Leader (TL) of Kendal MRT. Fern is not only his 1st search dog, but is the first English Shepherd in LDMRSDA, and in Mountain Rescue as far as we know. They team started training in late 2012, and graded in July 2014. Dave and Fern can often be found out and about on the Lakes and Fells, as Dave’s day job is as an Outdoor Instructor.

Penny Kirby from Wasdale MRT graded her dog Jess as a Searchdog on Saturday 5th October.

Jess is Penny’s 5th dog in a career as a handler, which started with Search Dog Ben in SARDA England days – 30+ years ago.. Since then, Penny keeps coming back for more, with some interesting training rewards – we will never forget her turning up with dried Fish skin, to reward the second dog, Miff, during training. She would always claim that things weren’t going well in training any of the dogs, yet consistently turned out great search dogs – Ben, Miff, Pippi, and Olly – who served her, Wasdale team and the Association with great distinction.

The latest, Search Dog Jess, is another success for a dedicated handler.

Penrith MRT
Air Scenting Graded Dog Team
Matt and his rescued Border Collie Morag finally made the grade at the Patterdale Training weekend in May 2018, after a 4.5 hour search of Brown Cove in baking temperatures. Matt is a member of Penrith MRT, and is a teacher by profession. He’s also a member of the Cumbria Ore Mines Rescue Unit, though Morag’s grading doesn’t qualify her as an underground search dog ! Matt has recently become a proud father as well, so his life is somewhat overloaded at present !

(Cockermouth MRT)
Graded Air Scenting Dog Team
Stage 4
Tom, a member of Cockermouth MRT  has graded his 1st dog Bess. Bess is a lively collie to say the least, she has a fascination with the game ‘tuggy’ and search dog Marty… Bess loves barking… maybe too much… Bess is a rangy, enthusiastic dog.

Keswick MRT
Air Scenting Graded Dog Team
Martin Bell & his lively Border Collie Isla graded at a special assessment session at Hollows Farm, Borrowdale in December 2015, after a lengthy series of assessments. As a paramedic, and very fit hillsman, Martin has all of the assets to be a dog handler, and living in Rosthwaite in the Borrowdale Valley is likely to get plenty of work as well! Isla is a beautiful, loveable bitch, from a breeder who has supplied a number of successful collies to handlers in the Association

Keswick MRT
Air Scenting Graded Dog Team
Rob, a professional photographer by profession, graded his feisty Collie bitch, Rona, in November 2015 at Buttermere. Rob is responsible for many of the excellent photos on the site, as well as on the Keswick MRT website. A bit of a technical geek, he has already equipped Rona with a GPS collar, so he can plot where she has been on a callout ! Rona may be small in size but is big in attitude – but she loves to be cuddled and fussed over as well. Rob is the Association Chairman.

Patterdale MRT
Full Mountain Trailing Dog Team
Dave Benson (usually known as “Benny”) and his dog Brock have been ploughing a lonely furrow on the Trailing Dog course, where the dog follows an individual’s scent to locate the casualty or missing person. As we have no instructors in this discipline, Benny and Brock have been working with a variety of organisations including SARDA Wales and NSARDA. The team have just been upgraded after a series of assessments. On Sunday 8th December 2019 Benny & Brock passed their final assessments to be upgraded to Full Mountain Trailing Dog Team status.