Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Search and rescue dogs from 9/11 reunited in powerful photo series

dog-hero-2-real.jpg
dog-hero.jpg

Dutch photographer Charlotte Dumas has reunited the search and rescue dogs who helped to retrieve survivors from the wreckage of the 9/11 disaster in a moving photo series.

Following the horrific collapse of the World Trade Centre in New York, over 100 dogs were brought in to help find people buried beneath the rubble.

Charlotte Dumas remembers the striking images of the dogs searching amongst the disaster site - some for so long that they received eye drops when they became tired - and wanted to find out what had happened to the dogs afterwards. She wrote on her website that: "the dogs searched and comforted, they gave consolation to anyone involved. Seeing these pictures, I was also comforted. They somehow emanated a spark of hope amidst this scene of destruction."

Bailey, from Franklin, Tennessee. Photo: Charlotte Dumas

The dogs had been brought in to work on the site by the US Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) from all over the United States because of the scale of the disaster. After survivors had been rescued, they returned to their home states across the country.

Ten years on, Charlotte wanted to find out what had happened to the dogs after the disaster. "These animals were all at the same place at the same time, one decade ago, for the same reason: to work. That experience unites them, and was the incentive for me to pursue this subject and to photograph the dogs", she wrote.

Bretagne, from Cypress, Texas. Photo: Charlotte Dumas

Through FEMA she managed to track down 15 of the 100 dogs, the majority of whom have now retired, but still live with the handlers who worked with them throughout their careers.

The result is her photo series Retrieved, picturing the dogs in their old age, but capturing their brave and dignified attitude, united by their noble work. "They now share the vulnerability of old age while symbolizing a full decade coming to a close", Charlotte wrote.

The series moved both dog owners and those affected by 9/11, and is now available to buy as a book from Charlotte's website and Amazon. Scroll down to see more of the dogs:

Merlyn, from Otis, Colorado. Photo: Charlotte Dumas

Orion, from Vacaville, California. Photo: Charlotte Dumas

Abigail, from Ojai, California. Photo: Charlotte Dumas

Guinness, from Highland, California. Photo: Charlotte Dumas

Words: Victoria Gray, Images: Charlotte Dumas

Related

shoe-hero-2.jpg

The Shoe Bakery makes cake and ice cream shaped shoes good enough to eat

fash-hero.jpg

This week's A-list fashion round up

downton-hero.jpg

The trailer for the new series of Downton Abbey is here

hero.jpg

Meet the A-list pets of Instagram

hero.jpg

This dog pool party will give you that warm summer feeling again

hamburg-hero.gif

Photo series of a dog's last day on earth goes viral

More

The best possible gifts for when flowers aren’t going to cut it

17 unusual and thoughtful gifts for when the s**t hits the fan

by Amy Swales
22 Sep 2017

This Battle of the Sexes legend wants you to STOP asking about McEnroe

“I would like to see John McEnroe win a Grand Slam tournament while pregnant”

by Susan Devaney
22 Sep 2017

“The real reason we should all be upset about Uber”

Grow up: your bank balance really isn’t what’s at stake here

by Kayleigh Dray
22 Sep 2017

There's a huge sherbet fountain coming to London - and it's free

Bompas & Parr are planning a weird, wonderful and nostalgia-filled event

by Helen Brown
22 Sep 2017

Rick and Morty creator responds to sexist trolling of female writers

The show hired four women. Cue cries of “Worst. Episodes. Evah.”

by Amy Swales
22 Sep 2017

Everything you need to know about Uber being banned in London

The taxi firm has had its license revoked by TfL

by Moya Crockett
22 Sep 2017

The new Baileys flavour you’ll want to drink well beyond Halloween

Perfect autumn cocktails ahead

by Amy Swales
22 Sep 2017

This unexpected town has been voted the best place to work in the UK

We didn’t see this one coming

by Moya Crockett
22 Sep 2017

Harry Potter fans, this epic Hogwarts goblet is actually magical

It's perfect for Butterbeer (or prosecco)

by Megan Murray
22 Sep 2017

The hidden meanings behind the nation’s most popular baby names

Prepare for lots of girls’ names ending in ‘a’

by Moya Crockett
22 Sep 2017