Dog #4: Trakr, the German Shepherd
More than 300 Search and Rescue dogs aided their human counterparts in the coming months following the September 11th attacks helping find and uncover survivors from the miles of rubble. One report found that the dogs were especially distraught at the lack of survivors they were able to find, as they saw it as an unsuccessful means to their job.
Of this K-9 team was Trakr and his police officer handler, James Symington, who drove to New York City from Canada to help locate those trapped or no longer breathing under the rubble of Ground Zero. Trakr and Symington are credited with finding the last survivor, a woman who had been imprisoned under heavy concrete and steel for over 24-hours. Their actions earned Trakr the title of one of the most famous dogs in history.
Trakr was recognized by Time magazine as one of ten most heroic animals of all time, but his fame didn’t stop there. In 2009, Trakr was chosen to be cloned by BioArts International, who had been cloning belated family pets privately for a pretty penny. As a winner of the “Best Friend Again” contest, Trakr’s clone was reunited with his owner, Symington, who continues to train the descendants of the heroic dog to be Search and Rescue canines.