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Service Animals

Cadaver Dogs – An Interview With Debera Salo

Val Cairney February 23, 2024 35

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cadaver dogs, an interview with Debera Salo

Hi everyone. This episode is about cadaver dogs, an interview with Debera Salo, who is a member of the Ontario Search and Recovery Canines. Yes! Cadaver dogs. You heard right. Ontario Search and Recovery Canines consists of humans with canines with independent certifications and countless hours of training, dedicating themselves to the ongoing search for missing persons in Ontario, Canada.  The dogs are certified in human remains detection for wilderness, rural, water recovery, cold case, forensic and historic remains.  I don’t know about you, but this sounds absolutely fascinating and I’m super excited to talk to Debera about her retired cadaver dog Ella and her working dog Rinnie.  So, let’s get to it!

Cadaver Dogs An interview With Debera Salo
Deb & Rinnie

Well I really appreciate Debera taking the time to talk to me about her trained human remains detection dog Rinnie.  I knew this would be a fascinating topic from the moment I heard about Debera and her working cadaver dog.  The fact that Ontario Search and Recovery Canines are a volunteer group, with amazing humans and canines dedicating themselves to the search for closure for so many people in many different circumstances, really demonstrates what I have always known; working dogs and their humans are special.  I just know that as Rinnie gains more experience and advances her training, she and Debera will be hitting the road with a purpose more and more.  I think their participation in the search for Indigenous children from the residential school system, buried in and around the area of the schools, shows their dedication and faith in their dogs and their abilities.  As Debera said, Rinnie did it, within five minutes of hitting the forest.  So, I really tip my hat to Debera Salo and Rinnie, members of Ontario Search and Recovery Canines and I encourage you to have a look at to see the team and read about their organization.  Thanks again Debera, for enlightening us to another way dogs are not only amazing companions but team members working for the greater good.  In this case knowing really is caring.

About Deb

A retired Air Traffic Controller, Deb adopted her first dog, a rescue black lab named Ella. Deb joined OSARC in 2020 and Deb and Ella certified in HRD Land with Eastern States Working Dog Association (ESWDA) in 2021. Also in 2021 Deb purchased a yellow lab pup, K9 Rinnie. 

 K9 Rinnie is certified with the International Police Work Dog Association in Water Recovery, Land and Crime Scene, as well as Land certification with ESWDA.

Deb and K9 Rinnie travel extensively attending seminars and workshops for continued education in water recovery, crime scene, graves and historic burials. 

Contact — OSARC ( for more information.

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Val Cairney

Hi everyone, and welcome to Val Talk’s Pets, the forum for pet parents and enthusiasts alike. So, I have been working in the pet industry now for almost 10 years and, on a daily basis, I handle a lot of issues and questions arising from pet parents. I am not a veterinarian but I do have certifications in Canine, Feline, Small Animal, Fish and Herptile and Avian Health and Nutrition from the University of California, Davis Extension, the Vet College.

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