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Dundonnell Mountain Rescue volunteer and her pup completed 53 call-outs together

By Iona M.J. MacDonald

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Alison Smith of Dundonnell Mountain Rescue, with her dog Meg. Picture: Alasdair Earnshaw/Dundonnell MRT.
Alison Smith of Dundonnell Mountain Rescue, with her dog Meg. Picture: Alasdair Earnshaw/Dundonnell MRT.

Dundonnell Mountain Rescue volunteer member shares the "pride" she feels working with the essential service, and her dog Meg who goes with her everywhere.

Alison Smith works with Police Scotland, and is also a volunteer team member of Dundonnell Mountain Rescue Team.

Alison said: "I made the decision to join Dundonnell MRT as I have always loved the outdoor life and in particular being out and about in the hills. The opportunity to learn and train alongside others whilst helping folk in the wilds of the Highlands was a natural jump from my public sector background.


"Our team is a great group of people whose diverse talents and backgrounds come together to get the job done! We spend a lot of time training, which is paramount to the success of the team but also made enjoyable as I’m working with like-minded people. I especially like our weekends away learning or expanding skills.

"I have such a sense of pride in our team when someone is returned to their family after being in a difficult/dangerous situation and we have helped in some way. Of course there are sad times too which the team come together to reflect on, so it’s never lonely.

"From the minutes the call goes out and we muster at the Base we are all focused on the rescue and search. The skills I’ve learned in training are used each time and it gives me confidence to be part of the team. I have an understanding husband who is fully supportive of the time I spend with the team.

"I am also a Search and Rescue Dog Association Scotland (SADRA) dog handler having completed both Novice and Full Dog training and assessment. My dog Meg comes with me everywhere, and we are very much a team. We’ve completed 53 call-outs together since obtaining call out status. It’s hard work being a dog handler and the commitment is rightly huge but so are the rewards and being part of the SARDA family is great."

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