Requirements of detection dogs: fervent, keen, driven. Certain canine breeds have these natural instincts. And if there’s one thing experts will tell you about training detection dogs, it’s that these traits cannot be compromised.
Written by Dr. Cindy Otto, DVM, PhD
At the Penn Vet Working Dog Center (WDC), we are dedicated to harnessing the unique strengths of our canine partners and producing an elite group of scent-detection dogs for public safety and health. Our dogs are trained to prevent crime and acts of terrorism, working alongside military, police, TSA, and the Department of Defense to find explosives and narcotics; rescue victims of accidents or disasters, using expert search and recovery skills; detect ovarian cancer; and alert people with diabetes when their blood sugar is out of normal range.
We recently graduated our first diabetes detection dog, a purebred golden retriever named Bretagne. This super sniffer can alert her owner, Wayne Mowry of Bloomingdale, NJ, when his blood sugar levels are too high or low.
So does Bretagne’s breed matter? It’s a common question, and the answer is honestly, “Yes.”
Dogs are capable of intelligent work that can save lives; Bretagne is just one example. Experts often work with purebred dogs to ensure these canine graduates are dependable and can deliver on their…