HK trains homeless dogs into drug-detecting dogs.
Since last year, police in Hong Kong’s Special Administrative Region have been training homeless dogs, into excellent drug-detectors.
The police department has teamed up with the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department, (AFCD) to select suitable abandoned dogs to train into police dogs.
Hong Kong’s Police Dog Unit headquarters has 16 Passive Alert Dogs (PAD). Three of them were once homeless.
“Passive” means that if the dog smells drugs on a person it will just sit in front of the person, instead of barking or attacking.
“One dog was bought from abroad; the other was a stray, we picked it up from the AFCD. After eight weeks training, both dogs passed the strict exam; they performed almost equally well in the drug-detecting mission.”
Former stray dog, Six-year-old Barry, has been a police dog for three years.
“I remember when I first met Barry three years ago. He had a health problem, like a skin disease on his body. He didn’t trust humans due to his experiences as a stray.”
But Barry has advantages. He loves to play games, making training easier with better results.
Hong Kong police says the adoptions enable them to cut the cost of breeding its own dogs, while also setting an example of respecting animals and life.
“We want to tell the public one thing—we love animals, we don’t want them to receive cruel treatment. If a dog has the potential, we will for sure train it into an excellent police dog.”
After eight weeks’ training, Barry got rid of his habit of fighting and picking food off the street, turning into an excellent and hard-working drug-detecting dog.
In his three years’ service as a police dog, he’s carried out one-hundred-and-fifty missions.
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