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Celebration of Scholarship and Creative Activity 2023

Efficacy of HRD Dogs in Searches for Human Skeletal Remains

Kylie Mallmann,

Amber Galewski,

Sophia Salm


 We’ve designed our research project to study the proficiency of Human Remains Detection (HRD) dogs with the detection of skeletal human remains. Early in the summer we prepared our experiment on the AGM Nature Preserve by burying ten bones, five of which were human, five were bear, and we dug five empty holes and two piles of soil. Each of the bones were buried around six inches, and around two feet. We then reached out to ten different teams from four different states in the Midwest. For confidentiality purposes, we agreed to neither list the names of these individuals or their dogs. Four responded with interest, however, we ran into some difficulties with scheduling, and only two teams were able to participate in the study, with six dogs total. Other teams wished to not participate in fear of the results putting a negative reputation onto their name. We then allowed each of the dog and handler teams to conduct their searches, and marked the coordinates of where the dog signaled to compare with the coordinates of the bones that we buried.

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1 Comment

  1. Terese Barta, interested K9 handler

    When do you think you will have some results?


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