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Police Dogs, Between Duty And Instinct

Considered an important part of an institution, police dogs have been used since ancient times and not for nothing they are the most popular pets. But we do not mean the dogs waiting glued to the door that jump right in your arms as soon as they see you, but to those whose qualities are beyond the common ones, those for which we brought them in our home. In fact, the qualities of police dogs are in strong connection with their shrewd personality. Their intelligence coupled with strict training represents, without a doubt, the perfect combination adopted nowadays by all political institutions of the world.

But the first people who used police dogs in defense, detection and surveillance were Greeks and Babylonians in the fifth century BC. Moreover, in 1840, Benjamin Franklin decided to use dogs against war and this is not the only example. For instance, before the fall of Rome, in addition to protection, dogs were used for the military qualities they had, and also used during the Vietnam War.

Best known because of their ability to solve seemingly obscure cases, police dogs are friendly, although in the first years of life they are solitary. More recently, they are offered a different environment in which to develop, their training including some strict rules regarding the surrounding environment. Although not indicated, they attach themselves to the coach or the cops with whom they were trained. They are taught to be aggressive, but obedient, which involves a number of risks.

Their duties are not just about protection, but almost all police departments are using dogs to detect bombs, to find some criminals or drugs. In the U.S., where quite a lot of film production about this category of animals have appeared, police dogs are also awarded based on the work carried out during important missions. One of the most famous is "Pascha", which helped in finding earthquake victims under the rubble in Japan.

Breeds that can be used as police dogs:

  • Belgian Malinois, the best police dog;
  • Doberman, called the perfect guard dog;
  • German Shepherd, which is supposed to have arisen through the domestication of wolves;
  • Rottweiler, the breed that has a very pronounced protective instinct;
  • Bloodhound, used in detecting human scent.

Most of these races have become popular with the end of World War I, after they were publicly acknowledged extraordinary merits, being trained long before the war. For example, Rottweilers, both German and American breed, are extremely strong dogs that inspires fear. There aren't to be neglected the Labrador Retriever dogs, which can detect with ease any trace of drugs. They are particularly valuable because of their gentleness and ability to swim.

German Shepherd is known thanks to its special qualities. Dogs of this breed are spread throughout the world, with the assumption that German shepherds were using them since immemorial times. Slowly, they are replaced by Belgian Shepherds, Malinois variety, with short hair, more docile, more active, faster, more dynamic and more aggressive. On the other hand, the Akita dog breed is supposed to be part of the 14 oldest domesticated breeds, wearing also the wolf gene. The only drawback for coaches is that this breed has a behavior that may slightly deviate, meaning that they are prone to sudden shifts, from gentleness to violence. And, unlike other breeds, these police dogs are difficult to train, requiring an experienced trainer who knows perfectly their behavior. One of the most suitable dogs for training is the Doberman, because is very cooperative. Doberman needs human coordination, which is written in the job description. Thus, Doberman can work alongside humans in the best conditions.

Police dogs are trained to find buried dead bodies, drugs, explosives, people trapped under rubble and so on. The individuals are bred and trained within the unit. Selection is based on their genes, meaning that the dogs mentioned above are preferable. After they turn three months, the little police dogs are assigned to police units, according to the qualities that they present. For 2 weeks, during which each agent of the chosen department is offered a dog, they are initiated into the work field. Then, the dog and his instructor train together within the unit. The age at which a dog can return on the field is 12-15 months.

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