Abu Dhabi: Can’t teach your old dog new tricks? Just call the police.
The K9 section of Abu Dhabi police is training civilian dogs on how to be obedient and guard their master’s home.
“Dog owners can seek help from our professional K9 trainers who can teach dogs how to obey and execute orders.
“We have trained over 30 civilian dogs in our facility,” Lieutenant Hamad Mubarak Al Azizi, Office Manager of K9 Security Search Department told XPRESS.
The course can take two to three months depending on the breed. Dogs will be taught to guard and protect homes.
“The training makes dogs attentive to commands. We also teach them how to guard homes and farms,” added Lieutenant Azizi.
He should know. After all, he manages an elite dog squad which undertakes anything from rescue operations to tracing missing persons, detecting explosives and narcotics and even chasing suspects on the run.
The squad includes 260 sniffer dogs many of whom have been part of rescue missions during earthquakes in Indonesia, Pakistan and Afghanistan.
In an exclusive visit to K9 XPRESS got a sneak-peek at the superdogs. An aggressive giant black male German shepherd called Mrtah was in action, lunging at a trainer wearing protective gear.
When off duty, the canines relax in air-conditioned chambers where soothing music is played to keep them calm. But as soon as they see an unfamiliar face, they become alert. Their hackles rise menacingly and they start barking and baying from behind the cages labelled drugs yard, disorder yard, corpse and rescue yard, riots and rescue training yard etc.
Police dogs go through a regimental training schedule before they officially join the K9 squad. Starting with a drill walk at 6.30 in the morning, the squad goes through regular activities that will keep them fit and trim for a chase — anytime.
Explaining the process of selection, Lieutenant Azizi said dogs are selected based on their strong olfactory abilities, sharp intelligence, physical abilities, behavioural patterns and ability to execute tasks. On average, the service life of a police dog will not exceed 10 years.
The sniffer dogs come mostly from Germany, UK, Belgium and Holland. Some are locally bred at the breeding branch. Lieutenant Azizi said German shepherds and Labrador retrievers make the best sniffer dogs, but border collies and springer spaniels are also becoming popular.
- Those interested to train their dogs with K9 can call Emirates Dog Breeders Society on 02 4448602/02 4446639