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article imageSpaniels join police force

By Lynn Curwin     Aug 4, 2010 in Crime
Two young Springer Spaniels are now helping to control crime with their noses. They are new drugs search dogs who have joined the Gloucestershire Constabulary.
The dogs, Barney and Holly, were chosen from among several candidates for the positions. They were both donated by residents of the area.
The spaniels, which are 18 months old, began training with PCs Claire Todd and Debbie Shields from the dog section in June. They took part in an intensive six-week course and are now able to search for Class A and B drugs, cash and firearms.
The addition of the new animals brings the total number of drugs search dogs in the Gloucestershire Constabulary to five. Six-year-old Bobby, Four-year-old Buddy, and another Holly, who is two, are the experienced members of the team.
Officers from the dog section handle the drugs search dogs, as well as the general purpose German Shepherd dogs.
In a press release, Dog Section Sergeant, Mark Duncton said: "With five dogs we can provide a drugs detection service virtually round the clock, helping other police officers in their efforts to detect and reduce drugs-related offences.
“These dogs are incredibly effective in their jobs and in the last month alone they have made significant finds of cash, stolen property and drugs hidden away that otherwise may have been missed.
“More than 50 people carrying unlawful drugs on them were detected last month due to the combined efforts of the drugs dog handlers and other officers. Our dogs love their work, and have a very fulfilling life.”
He said he would like to thank the public for the offers of dogs made when the force was searching for suitable animals.
They are currently looking for German Shepherds to be involved in police work such as tracking and searching, as well as dogs such as spaniels or Labrador retrievers for searching out explosives. Suitable dogs would be between the age of one and two, have sound temperaments, be well socialised and have a strong drive for toy play.
Anyone interested in donating a dog for police work can contact the Police Dog Section on 01242 276427.
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