Five years ago, a Sacramento, California, shelter dog named Rocket was deemed too energetic to be adopted and scheduled for euthanasia. Now, Rocket is helping out in Hurricane Harvey cleanup as a search dog trained to work with first responders in disasters. The Sacramento SPCA first recommended Rocket as a search dog in 2012. Shelter workers saw the high energy that made Rocket difficult to adopt as a potential bonus for a disaster search dog. The SPCA is always looking for animals who “have that instinct to want to do jobs, that … like to play with toys and solve problems.”
… When a canine recruiter from the National Disaster Search Dog Foundation tested Rocket, a border collie mix, he failed. However, the volunteer who tested Rocket couldn’t get him out of her mind. Not wanting to leave Rocket to die, she and her husband adopted the dog, bringing him out on expeditions with another search dog. With their help, Rocket passed his search dog test in 2013.