B.C. puppy has big dreams of becoming an avalanche rescue dog

Chilko comes from a breeder that has eight other dogs in the Canadian Avalanche Rescue Dog Association

Chilko has aspirations of becoming an avalanche rescue dog. Keri Sculland/Star Photo

Skiers might notice a young lady out with her human mom on the ski hill this winter, learning the ropes and figuring out how to ski alongside everyone else.

Her name is Chilko, and she’s a black Labrador retriever puppy. She will be out with her human mom, Lisa Roddick, on the slopes this winter, and has big dreams of becoming an avalanche rescue dog.

Over the course of the winter, Chilko will be chilling with her mom, and they will have plenty of time to get to know each other.

Chilko comes from a breeder that has eight other dogs successful in the Canadian Avalanche Rescue Dog Association (CARDA) program. The woman raises the puppies, and picks the right dog to match the new owner, Roddick explained.

“She spends every day for the first eight weeks getting to know them, so she understands what their personalities are like,” Roddick said. “I’ve only had her for two months, so we’re just getting to know each other.”

At nearly five months old, Chilko is a ball of energy, and likes to chew on everything. She really enjoys food, and will do anything for a good treat. When she’s being good, her favourite treat is duck jerky.

“She’s a little crazy. She really, really likes food. Anything that she gets to eat gets her pretty stoked,” Roddick said.

Already, Chilko is getting used to life in the snow. She doesn’t seem to mind the snow cats driving around, the snowmobiles that go by, or the skiers that zoom past her.

Off the slopes, Chilko enjoys playing hide and seek in the forest, and going up to the Bush Party trail, because there’s lots of room to run around and great stumps to hide behind when she’s playing hide and seek.

At home, her favourite toy is part of an old fleece sweater she likes to play tug with.

For now, Chilko will go to work at the ski hill with Roddick, who works as ski patrol, and learn from other avalanche dog handlers who work there. Chilko is also a member of Golden and District Search and Rescue, with her mom.

“It’s another way to grow in my job at work. I’ve taken avalanche courses and first aid courses, and now I get to learn something new,” said Roddick. “It’s going to be a learning process. She’s been up the gondola a few times already.

While Chilko aims to become an avalanche rescue dog, she has a bit of time to just be a puppy before the hard work begins.

“I think it will be super fun, and I think it will go well. For the first six months, she’s a puppy, and I get to have fun with her. We’ll build a great relationship, we will do some basic obedience, and after that we will work on the avalanche training stuff,” Roddick said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Homes evacuated in Fairmont due to localized flooding from heavy rainfall

RDEK has issued a state of local emergency, RCMP going door to door in affected areas

Kimberley Arts Council keeping the arts alive during pandemic

Centre 64 is Kimberley remains closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but… Continue reading

The Weed Warrior: an invasive weed, new to the East Kootenay

Wild Parsnip is a plant that most of us don’t want to have a Close Encounter of any Kind with

Selkirk graduation in Kimberley will look very different this year

We have all had to change things in the face of the… Continue reading

Council to write letter of support for Kimberley Dynamiters

KIJHL teams all seeking financial support from the provincial government in wake of COVID-19

VIDEO: Injured bald eagle rescued in B.C. First Nations community

Bird suspected injured in fight, whisked off to Coquitlam rehab

Toronto Raptors’ Ujiri says conversations about racism can no longer be avoided

Thousands have protested Floyd’s death and repeated police killings of black men across the United States

‘I’m afraid’: Witnesses of wolf attack on senior near Prince Rupert worried about safety

Frank Russ shows where the unprovoked wolf attacked his father

Protesters prepare to rally against racism in front of Vancouver Art Gallery

Rally is in response to the deaths of black Americans and a Toronto woman

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Protesters rally against anti-black, Indigenous racism in Toronto

Police estimated the crowd to be between 3,500 and 4,000 and said there was no violence

Feds earmark $1.5M to support recovery of B.C., Indigenous tourism

B.C. money will be split between Vancouver Island and Indigenous tourism

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Most Read