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Drug Sniffing Dogs – Can You Fool Them?
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Drug Sniffing Dogs – Can You Fool Them?

Is it possible to confuse a drug sniffing dog, into thinking you're not carrying?

Now this is a subject I shouldn't write about, but having been stopped in a road block, asked if I was carrying anything illegal, and then had the inside of my car sniffed by a dog, I thought I should.

Travelling down a road not normally used, heading towards a dam I hoped would offer up a good photograph or two, I met a police controlled road block. A quick pat of the pocket assured me I had my licence, and with my seat belt on, I was feeling confident I'd have no problem.

“Morning officer” my opening comment, “Morning, routine check.” the answer, not very friendly I thought as we went through the lights and indicator checks. All worked obviously, “are you carrying anything in your car that might be illegal?” his question to me. “Not at all Officer” I politely reply, “will you please step out of the car.” Now this is a request I consider refusing, I have a legal right to know what their suspicion is, as they may not search unless they think I've committed a crime.

Not wishing to waste time, light being important to my hobby, I stepped out and that's when I noticed the sniffer dog. Now this was no ordinary dog, it was a mixed breed, with no possible chance of identifying the main type. As thin as a rake, yet wide awake and happy, “what's wrong with the dog?” I asked the waiting cop, “nothing, we got him from a dealer, best damn sniffer dog we've ever had.” It turned its back to me and with its tail up reminded me of a pencil sharpener. You know the type that was always on the teacher's desk at school, the fat grey sharpener with the small hole.

Now I love dogs and when it was my turn to receive its attention, I greeted the dog and gave it a pat. With all the doors open it sniffed around, finding nothing as I expected. “Thank you Sir.” was the end of the search, but not the end for me. “Hold on a minute” I addressed the handler “Why don't you feed the dog?” he explained to me how they got the dog, a confiscated hound from a drug bust, someone's pet, taken to their pound they discovered this dog could sniff out any drug.

It suffered from what we call Africa disease, which is a dog that scavenge for its meals. A healthy dog just naturally thin, a happy dog, it enjoyed the attention I gave it. It had received promotion, from almost dead to police dog over night and although being now well fed, kept its natural leanness.

Can you fool a drug sniffing dog? No, not when trained by dealers, who use it to check their drugs, and drug quality. A well-loved pet now doing its duty, reducing the transport of drugs.


Street Talk

Great content Rob...I have watch many shows about dogs and a few about using dogs in fire investagitions and one good one on drug sniffing dogs. Considering dogs can smell 100 times better then us I agree that it would be pretty hard to fool a well trained dog.

Reply
  about 5 years ago

How right you are Connie, it always amazes me their abilities. My one dog can smell the arrival of KFC before the delivery bicycle gets anywhere near the house, and begins an excited yelp that tells us its near....

Reply
  about 5 years ago
Joan S  

What a story! I loved the pencil sharpener analogy. Hah. Do they pick people at random to search? Cute dog with a marketable skill. Btw, I checked out milk tarts online. I love custard tarts. No wonder you were having one for breakfast. Found recipes for several South African desserts. The old me would have made every one of them by now, and eaten them too. So, I get it Rob.

Reply
  about 5 years ago

Thanks Joan, when you hit one of these road blocks they check most people. After I gave up drinking,in fact seven years after I was stopped in a block, they asked when I had my last drink and i told them 7 yrs ago, the policeman laughed and made me take a Breathalyzer anyway, Linda was fuming, I thought it a joke....

Reply
  about 5 years ago

Your range of topics never ceases to amaze me Rob. Another insight into something I hadn't thought about. We see the dogs at the airport sometimes - beagles here. Such cute little guys and such a great deterrent I would think. Trick them? Not likely! My dog knows things about me that obviously I don't know myself some days!

Reply
  about 5 years ago

I have written a few articles on sniffer dogs, somewhere between the 180 are my top reads they are all dog articles..

Reply
  about 5 years ago

I'm not surprised if I've missed one or two of your articles! ;-)

  
  about 5 years ago
Lemuel  

That dog was probably trained for quality control of drugs by his previous bad owners. Glad he's now working for the good guys. Looks like no drugs can pass through that checkpoint. Nice photographer instincts, you have managed to take a picture of the dog.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Thanks Lemuel, I got great pictures of Lion on the same day, you should check out my blog visitstothepark.wordpress, I got some good shots.

Reply
  about 6 years ago
Lemuel  

Very nice pictures. The blue background of your blog provides a good combination with the animals.

  
  about 6 years ago

Thanks Lemuel, I am actually enjoying the blogging, just my following is getting too big and the emails too many.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

ahhh, you can fool them, and that's all I am going to say on that! LOL ( Now that I said that no I am not a druggie, but traveled with many of them in my years touring)

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Shawn, I am amazed at dogs that can be trained to do this and to think that police dogs go through years of training, and now druggies are teaching their dogs too.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

It can be a very bad thing also. I know in years past that the drug growers in California use very poorly fed pit bulls to guard their fields. Every now and then we would read about one finding it's way to a town and really raising Cain.

  
  about 5 years ago

Thanks Rob! Glad to know that dogs can be rescued from drug dealers and given sniffer duty. Good article. Interesting topic.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Thanks Cynthia for the read some dogs can and others can't.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Interesting. I didn't know the dealers used them but it makes sense. Enjoyed it Rob

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Who knows these things John, not you or I I'm sure....

Reply
  about 6 years ago
Barbara9  

no, dogs are smarter than humans

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Cool, man. Poor puppy! 'Domesticated' pets is a bit of propaganda--what they are is enfeebled compared to their relations, the wolves. Very interesting article. I read somewhere they're developing olfactory sensors, like 'smell cameras', that may someday be more sensitive than a dog's nose. I think they'll never make it unless they can come up with a 'sneeze function' that cleans off the olfactory surface every once in a while....

Reply
  about 6 years ago

I like that Chris, I sometimes think my computer needs a button like that. The Cancer research people who are testing dogs for sniffing cancer are trying to set up a smell robot..... not sure they will get it right...

Reply
  about 6 years ago

The information that people could have a dog to test their drugs quality came to me as a little shock I must confess. Maybe I am just too innocent! At least now the dog found a better job. You did good to write that article Rob

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Thanks Maria, I have no knowledge on drugs, But obviously these users needed a dog to check their drugs for them, go figure...

Reply
  about 6 years ago
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