(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Dogs prove to be the best friends of abu dhabi police sniffing out hidden drugs and explosives missing persons and items and finding victims of disasters
“to ensure greater results in their tasks dog handlers have to receive the best training. current handlers also receive training on new techniques depending on the task at hand” says lt-col habash.
according to him not anyone can be a dog handler which is why certain basic qualities have to be taken into account for one to be recruited.
“they must be young intelligent patient agile and physically fit. the basic training covers various methods of handling and taking care of the dogs.”
he says that all handlers are emiratis who work to ensure that the muslim community is not offended by the presence of dogs.
although some police dogs have been exposed to some dangerous circumstances while performing their tasks no deaths have ever been reported. however the dogs’ natural instinct to attack comes out sometimes which exposes their handlers to great harm.
last year the k9 department carried out 4235 inspection operations and dealt with 83 cases with the help of police dogs.
the abu dhabi police has also become the pioneer in detecting palm weevil in date plantations in al ain using sniffer dogs.
“the natural instincts and abilities of dogs to solve complex cases have not been matched by any of today’s technological advances” says lt-col habash.
he however adds that new technological innovations are being used to complement the natural abilities that the dogs possess.
a case in point are the new advanced cameras mounted on dogs to help search and rescue teams in locating survivors missing individuals and bodies buried under the rubble in cases of disaster.
the camera is mounted and strapped on the dog’s head; it is equipped with sensors for noises visuals and lighting and is capable of transmitting live images that are 20 metres away even in dark and very narrow areas.
the abu dhabi police have successfully used this technology in rescue missions during natural disasters in pakistan afghanistan and indonesia.
german shepherds malinois labradors and golden retrievers have proven to be the most capable in this field.
these types have an estimated life span of 11 to 14 years and due to their physical strength they take one meal daily consisting of meat and special biscuits.
most of the dogs at the k9 department are bred at the dog breeding branch in al ain but some of them are imported from countries known to have excellent dog breeds.
when the dogs are no longer fit to perform their tasks either due to old age or a health problem a special committee decides on whether to sell them or give them away to people wishing to own them. members of the public can use police dogs to handle private tasks on the consent of the abu dhabi police.