Reduce Risks from Invasive Species Coalition (RRISC) Recognizes Mussel Dogs for Environmental Protection

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Mussel Dogs, a leader in the inspection of watercraft for quagga and zebra mussels, was recognized for “Outstanding Achievement By a Private Sector Company in Protecting America’s Environment and Economy.”

Mussel Dogs receives national recognition from the RRISC!

Debra DeShon, Founder of Mussel Dogs

Mussel Dogs has given us a significant technological breakthrough in the difficult fight against invasive zebra and quagga mussels. They did it by tapping into one of the most sensitive detection instruments known to man, a dog's sense of smell.

Mussel Dogs, a leader in the inspection of watercraft for quagga and zebra mussels, was recognized for “Outstanding Achievement By a Private Sector Company in Protecting America’s Environment and Economy.” On June 15th, 2016, the Reduce Risks from Invasive Species Coalition (RRISC) hosted its Third Annual Congressional Reception and Awards Dinner at which Debra DeShon accepted the award on behalf of Mussel Dogs.

Representative Dan Benishek (R-MI), who Co-Chairs the Congressional Invasive Species Caucus, spoke with attendees about how the economy, environment, and public health are affected by Invasive Species in every Congressional District. During the event, RRISC recognized several individuals and organizations from all over the country who display excellence in reducing the risks and adverse effects of invasive species.

Scott Cameron, President of the Reduce Risks from Invasive Species Coalition, said, "Mussel Dogs has given us a significant technological breakthrough in the difficult fight against invasive zebra and quagga mussels. They did it by tapping into one of the most sensitive detection instruments known to man, a dog's sense of smell. Mussel Dogs is now able to help protect the hundreds of billions of dollars of irrigation, municipal water supply, and hydroelectric generating capacity infrastructure in the Western United States from the risks posed by invasive mussels."

Ms. Debra DeShon, Founder of Mussel Dogs stated, “What an absolute honor to be recognized for doing what we love. Putting a dogs love of hide and seek to use finding quagga and zebra mussels and humans love of dogs as a way to open up an avenue for education. Our continued goal is to promote and aid in the use of canines in the field of environmental conservation.”

About Mussel Dogs, LLC

Debra DeShon was approached by a local lake in 2007 and asked if she could train canines to help expedite the inspection process of watercraft for quagga and zebra mussels. Mussel Dogs was created and since then has been qualified and permitted by California Department of Fish and Wildlife to possess quagga and zebra mussels for training, and now have trained and certified canines for inspections servicing multiple waterways.

About Reduce Risks from Invasive Species Coalition

The Reduce Risks from Invasive Species Coalition (RRISC) seeks to reduce the risks posed by invasive
species to the economy, environment, and public health by educating Americans about those risks and promoting cost-effective non-regulatory risk-based strategies for reducing them. More information about RRISC and the annual awards can be found at: http://www.rrisc.org

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