PETTIMUDI: She is less than a year old and is still honing her skills. But the arrival of Maya, the first cadaver search dog of Kerala Police, at Pettimudi, has kindled hope among relatives of those who went missing in the landslide.
On Sunday, incessant rain turned the workers’ colony into a marshy land making search operations an arduous task. Though Maya stopped the search at 1 pm, by then, she sniffed out three bodies buried three feet deep, before returning to Thrissur. The lead she gave proved crucial since it helped rescue workers dig up more bodies. Maya will return to Pettimudi on Monday.
Maya arrived at Pettimudi to aid the search with Dona, the search and rescue dog. Maya belongs to the Belgian Malinois breed which had led US special forces to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, slain former chief of the so-called Islamic State.
“Maya started her nine-month training in April and has to undergo six more months of training. A fast learner, she has surprised us. We are training her to follow blood and teeth traces. She will turn one on August 16, said her handler Prabhat.
Dona is a Labrador and is trained to trace life under debris. The two belong to the batch of 35 new canines inducted into the dog squad.