Sportsman Channel’s “Saving Private K-9” Favors the Underdog

Thursday, May 28 at 9 p.m. ET/PT

Sportsman Channel
Sportsman Channel

New Berlin, Wis. –( Accustomed to working with German Shepherds, soldiers questioned K-9 Nouschka, a black labrador training to become a bomb-detection dog, and her potential on the battlefield.  After a year of training with Sergeant David Varkett, K-9 Nouschka and her handler deployed to Afghanistan. Lt. Col. Oliver North, host of Sportsman Channel’s Saving Private K-9, takes viewers inside the team’s deployment, on a mission to find a cargo van rigged with explosives – a feat that would solidify their place among fellow soldiers.

Saving Private K-9
Sgt. David Varkett and Nouschka

Tune in to the award-winning original series Saving Private K-9 on Thursday, May 28 at 9 p.m. ET/PT exclusively on Sportsman Channel.

 Nouschka diligently trained to become deployment-ready for more than one year. Once she and Sgt. David Varkett were certified for bomb detection, they would have the chance to prove themselves in Afghanistan. On one of many missions, Nouschka and Sgt. Varkett set out to uncover a cargo van loaded with IEDs. The only problem – there were dozens of the same van in the area – meaning soldiers relied heavily on the K-9’s sense of smell. They must find the cargo van or risk a massive explosion.

 “Nouschka’s reputation was pretty well set for us,” said Sgt. Varkett. “She lasted two times over in Afghanistan which is really good for labs. Labs are a little more sensitive to the environment, more than a Shepherd or a Malinois. And with the continuous training that everyone contributed to, helping each other out as a team – it paid off.”

About Pilgrim Studios: Craig Piligian’s Pilgrim Studios produces a wide variety of unscripted and scripted programming for television, including hit series Fast N’ Loud, Misfit Garage and Street Outlaws for Discovery; Ghost Hunters for Syfy; The Ultimate Fighter for FOX Sports 1; Down East Dickering for History; Swamp Pawn for CMT; Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s and Raising Whitley for OWN; David Tutera’s CELEBrations for WEtv; Wicked Tuna and Wicked Tuna: North vs. South for National Geographic Channel; Amazing America with Sarah Palin and Saving Private K-9 for Sportsman Channel; Bring It! for Lifetime; Somebody’s Gotta Do It with Mike Rowe for CNN; and the recently launched My Big Fat Fabulous Life for TLC. The company also produced the breakout movie Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives for Discovery’s 2013 Shark Week, as well as the movie Shark of Darkness: Wrath of Submarine and the special Megalodon: The New Evidence for the channel’s Shark Week 2014. In the scripted realm, Pilgrim has produced the pilot Recovery Road ABC Family, recently picked up for a full season. The company’s original movies for Lifetime include Amanda Knox: Murder On Trial In ItalyAbducted: The Carlina White Story, which earned a 2012 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Writing In A Motion Picture; and the crime thriller Stalkers.

About Sportsman Channel: Launched in 2003, Sportsman Channel/Sportsman HD is a television and digital media company fully devoted to honoring a lifestyle that is celebrated by millions of Americans. A division of Outdoor Sportsman Group, Sportsman Channel delivers entertaining and informative programming that showcases outdoor adventure, hunting and fishing, and illustrates it through unique and authentic storytelling. Sportsman Channel embraces the attitude of “Red, Wild & Blue America” – where the American Spirit and Great Outdoors are celebrated in equal measure. Sportsman Channel reaches more than 36 million U.S. television households. Stay connected to Sportsman Channel online at, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

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