Why We Need More Detection Dogs And How You Can Help
Dogs have been known as mans' best friend for more than a millennia, and for good reason. From helping early humans hunt to warning them about imminent danger they have grown alongside civilization to know being used as trained detection dogs against bombs, drug smugglers and counterfeit money. Dogs have always been a loyal companion to humans, but now, due to the high cost of training and housing dogs during this training, there could be an incoming shortage of dogs that save lives on the front line of Australia's border and in Australia's internal drug prevention.
Due to some countries importing a large amount of detection dogs from overseas, namely the United States, there is the possibility of a shortage of the highly trained level of dogs that we expect to be used. It has already been established that the quality of some of these detection dogs has suffered because of this high demand. Despite this drop in quality, price has only risen which is the tell-tale sign of a global shortage. Australia employs a lot fewer detection dogs than a country the size of the USA, and can currently sustain its own creation of detector dogs, but if this changes then there is no one else to draw these dogs from due to the high demand overseas.
What Can You Do?
To aid in the creation of detector dogs, there are a few steps that you can take in your everyday life. If you are very passionate about helping to train the next generation of detector dogs, then you can apply to join the Australian Border Force or at one of the private companies in Australia that train up these dogs. As a civilian, there are still ways you can help, especially in the logistical support of raising these dogs, by fostering them during their training. From the age of nine weeks old up to the time they are ready to graduate at 18 months, you can help take care of these dogs that are so vital in Australia's defence. If you are interested, follow up on the Australian government's official page.
Are There Other Ways to Help?
If you can't take care of the very specific requirements needed to foster a dog that is currently being trained, then you can look into adopting a retired detection dog. There are also a lot of dogs that help people with disabilities that need help once they retire which you could really help with your home. If you cannot commit to fostering detection dogs during their training, then adopting a retired dog can be a great way to get a loyal pet and also help ease the burden on the officers currently taking care of them.