In the ongoing war on illegal drugs, detection dogs are of a great assistance to police departments. Well taught dogs that are trained to sniff out drugs can detect even the smallest amounts. Some detection dogs have the ability to sniff out minimal amounts of marijuana such as marijuana seeds that may have fallen into the cracks an older vehicles vinyl seats.
It is nearly impossible to hide drugs from the nose of a detection dog. What people find amazing is that detection dogs are even able to detect small amounts of cocaine even when hidden in unused coffee beans regardless of the fact that they release and overwhelming scent of aroma. Gasoline can’t even cover up the scent of drugs from a detection dog. This is one amazing quality these dogs have which is the ability to discern individual scents from each other even when they are combined.
Drugs don’t stop their though with these dogs. Detection dogs can also be trained to detect the scents of:
-Many Agricultural Items (Plants, Animals, Produce, etc.)
-Evidence of Crime
-Mobile Phones (In Regards to Contrabands in Prisons)
-The Remains of Humans (To Search for Hidden Evidence of a Murder)
-Polycarbonate Optical Discs Such as DVDs (Used to Search for Pirated or Bootleg Items)
-Expired Food Items (Such as Sandwiches)
Use of Detection Dogs:
In the state of California detection dogs are trained to search for Quagga Mussel (which is a highly invasive species) on boats at public boat ramps.
The Bumblebee Conservation Trust has trained dogs to search for bumblebees nest in order to conserve and protect endangered species.
Many prison dogs have been trained to search for cell phones in prison cells.
They May Seem Helpful, But Many Criticize the Use:
Detection dogs are not liked by everyone in the world. Critics say that these dogs allow for searches to be conducted without cause (an act of which is against the Constitution of the United States of America).
Problems do occur with these dogs such as the fact that some can detect drugs without any actually being in the presence, and then of course the dog cannot be called upon to testify.
The Australian state of New South Wales in the year 2001 brought up a legislation that would provide police with the power to use drug detection dogs without a warrant in public places such as licensed venues, music festivals and public transport. This legislation then was reviewed by the NSW Ombudsman of who in the year 2006 gave down a report that was of which highly critical for the use of dogs in the act of drug detection. In regards to the report, it of which stated that prohibited drugs were found in a mere 26% of searches conducted that followed with the use of detection dogs. Of the 26%, 84% were for small amounts of cannabis for personal use. The report also showed that the introduced legislation was ineffective in finding possessed prohibited drugs being only 0.19% of the searches leading to successful prosecution.
Detection Dogs Aren’t The Only Animals that Can Detect:
A quick interesting fact is that pigs can also be used to carry out some of the abilities of dogs in detecting certain objects.