Special police team uncovered $2 million, seized 24,000 drug shipments

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“We may search a home for 2 days and by no means discover it. They save us money and time.”

From sniffing out unlawful materials at airports, warehouses and houses, to work in counter terrorism operations, the police canines are in a position to do duties their human counterparts cannot.

Inside a posh at Majura in Canberra is the Australian Federal Police’s coaching centre for its 80 canines who work across the nation.

Dog handler, Mathew Blow, with his dog Leo run through the obstacle course.

Canine handler, Mathew Blow, along with his canine Leo run by way of the impediment course.Credit score:Eledsa Kurtz

The coaching facility features a makeshift home and airport terminal, full with a working baggage carousel.

Canines within the canine unit often start coaching at 18 months of age. They’re bred particularly for the position as a part of an Australian Border Drive program, though a handful come from the pound.

Coaching is an ongoing course of. The canines spending six weeks studying primary expertise after which spend 13 weeks with their handler earlier than going out to work for six months.

Ms Bushby mentioned solely the perfect canines make it by way of to the job.

“In the event you think about athletes, there’s good runners, then there’s those that do enjoyable runs after which there’s Olympic athletes, and we’re after these.”

“We had 10 canines in our final coaching course and solely two made it by way of, in order that was fairly a small quantity,” she mentioned.

When out within the discipline, AFP canines work their total profession with the one handler. Ms Bushby mentioned the bond between handler and canine is among the strongest relationships.

“They need to be very shut,” she mentioned.

Dog handler, Mathew Blow, with his dog Geoff run through the practice airport carousel.

Canine handler, Mathew Blow, along with his canine Geoff run by way of the observe airport carousel. Credit score:Elesa Kurtz

“They’ve to have the ability to belief one another, and whether or not they go into an atmosphere that is crowded or a floor that is uncommon, the canines have to belief the handler and the handler must belief the canine is aware of what it is doing.”

Main senior constable Kym Baillie is a current addition to handlers within the canine group, working along with her canine Ted round Canberra Airport and different places within the ACT.

“I have been within the AFP for 18 years and I’ve all the time needed to work with canines,” Ms Baillie mentioned.

“There’s quite a lot of issues to be taught like how one can deal with the canine and bond with them and in addition how one can place your self.”

A median police canine works for about eight years after which retires to a extra relaxed life with their handler, she mentioned.

Andrew Brown is a journalist on the Sunday Canberra Occasions. Andrew has labored on the Canberra Occasions since 2016.

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