Message from the Chief Commissioner

Dog Squad

Thu 31 October 2013

Dog Main Image

The Victoria Police Dog Squad has more than 30 working dogs just like Freddy!

These dogs specialise in one of three areas; general purpose, narcotics or explosives.

They highly trained and skilled in finding drugs or explosives during searches, with many enjoying long working relationships with their handlers.

The dogs are a very important asset to Victoria Police because their natural instincts and nose ability cannot be copied by science.

To celebrate 40 years of the Dog Squad, the Dog Squad 2017 calendar is now available for purchase at the Victoria Police Museum and online at the Victoria Police Image Library.  Profits from the sales of the calendar will be shared between Victoria Police Legacy and the Dog Squad's specialist breeding and training programs.

Here is some more information:

  • Canine teams are available and deployed to tasks 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  • The breeds most commonly used by Victoria Police for general purpose work are German Shepherds because they are physically strong and agile and can be aggressive on demand.
  • A detector team dogs training takes approximately ten weeks. Labrador Retrievers are used for detection work and during the course the dogs are trained to detect various smells linked to narcotics, explosives and firearms (guns).
  • Some people think that narcotic detection dogs are addicted to the drugs they are trained to locate. In fact, the dogs are rewarded with food when they find the smell they are trained to find.
  • At nine to 10 weeks of age, pups are placed in the care of carefully chosen civilian puppy-walking families who receive lessons on how to raise pups in preparation for their training by the Dog Squad.
  • At approximately 12-14 months of age, the pups are returned to the squad and are ready to start full-time training as police dogs.
  • The Dog Squad help police with locating offenders wanted for burglary offences, fights, missing people and armed and violent situations.

For more information visit the Dog Squad webpage.

 

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Fact: It takes about 18 weeks for one of our pups to complete a police dog training course. Our hard working dogs are trained in obedience, agility, retrieving, searching for property, searching for people, tracking and criminal work.

Fact: In 1975 the Victoria Police Dog Squad began training suitable pups for police work. The squad was ready for work a year later in 1976.

 
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