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Arson Dogs and other detection dogs -What do you know about them?

This is a discussion on Arson Dogs and other detection dogs -What do you know about them? within the Working Dogs forums, part of the Dog Shows and Performance category; I am in Tennessee. Here usually a dog is a department dog, but depending on your area could be a hired on thing. Check with ...

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Old 03-02-2012, 12:53 PM
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I am in Tennessee. Here usually a dog is a department dog, but depending on your area could be a hired on thing. Check with your fire chief to learn the procedures.

Napwda is great, I'm not too familiar with other organizations that certify arson/accelerant dogs. I would find someone who has been through programs, or check them out personally. The biggest issue, is what will possibly go to court. Arson, cadaver, narcotic, bombs. You can be picked apart by attorneys if immaculate training records are not kept, or the dog doesn't perform to national standards.

It is difficult to find a dog that has the correct drives and nerve combined. You can evaluate even young dogs, and it is easier to start with the right dog. You can spend a lot of time to build drive, or work on nerve, but if it isn't there, it will show later.

I work full-time as a paramedic, so I work two or three 24 hour shifts a week, leaving four or five days a week to work dogs. I don't get a day off, and vacations are even planned around seminars and certifications lol. Just having one or two is not nearly as much work.

Where are you located? I can try to find a group or association for you to help get you started.
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Old 03-02-2012, 01:48 PM
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I am in Tennessee. Here usually a dog is a department dog, but depending on your area could be a hired on thing. Check with your fire chief to learn the procedures.

Where are you located? I can try to find a group or association for you to help get you started.
Oh okay, yeah your seminars would just be a tad too far away seeing as I am located in California! haha Thank you! I'm in between Lake Tahoe and Sacramento. I don't mind traveling either, a couple hours any direction is fine.

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Napwda is great, I'm not too familiar with other organizations that certify arson/accelerant dogs. I would find someone who has been through programs, or check them out personally. The biggest issue, is what will possibly go to court. Arson, cadaver, narcotic, bombs. You can be picked apart by attorneys if immaculate training records are not kept, or the dog doesn't perform to national standards.
I will look in Napwda! And thank you, those are the sorts of things I need to know. I could see this happening, thank you for the tips!

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It is difficult to find a dog that has the correct drives and nerve combined. You can evaluate even young dogs, and it is easier to start with the right dog. You can spend a lot of time to build drive, or work on nerve, but if it isn't there, it will show later.
I see, is this why labs also excel at this? (from what I've read). All the labs I've meant seem to be pretty thick skinned per say, not much bothers them and they can be quite determined when they get their mind set to something. Do you ever apply the Volhard puppy test? I just recently heard about this test. Is it reputable and/or work? Are it's results accurate?

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I work full-time as a paramedic, so I work two or three 24 hour shifts a week, leaving four or five days a week to work dogs. I don't get a day off, and vacations are even planned around seminars and certifications lol. Just having one or two is not nearly as much work.
I see, this makes sense. I was like wow at first, because I can't imagine working an 8 hour regular work day then spending another 4 -6 hours training dogs. That's why I had to ask!
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Old 03-02-2012, 03:52 PM
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Look into napwda and ipwda. California laws differ from ours.

Yes, the puppy test are good. Look for no reaction, or very little to loud noises, slick surface, added height. I like to see a pup very interested in a tug or toy. One that doesn't take his eyes off of it, no matter what is going on around him. Have a helper drag the toy, you hold the pup, as it "disappears " , turn the pup loose and see if he will search, using his nose.
I also like really pushy pups. Very full of themselves. You may have a little tougher time with them, but in the end, they seem to be the ones who won't quit. Older dogs, up to two, you can get a better assessment of.
Labs can be great detection dogs. Gsds, malinois, dutchie are just my personal favorites. Border collies are great, though I have yet been able to work one myself.
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Old 03-05-2012, 12:18 PM
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Look into napwda and ipwda. California laws differ from ours.

Yes, the puppy test are good. Look for no reaction, or very little to loud noises, slick surface, added height. I like to see a pup very interested in a tug or toy. One that doesn't take his eyes off of it, no matter what is going on around him. Have a helper drag the toy, you hold the pup, as it "disappears " , turn the pup loose and see if he will search, using his nose.
I also like really pushy pups. Very full of themselves. You may have a little tougher time with them, but in the end, they seem to be the ones who won't quit. Older dogs, up to two, you can get a better assessment of.
Labs can be great detection dogs. Gsds, malinois, dutchie are just my personal favorites. Border collies are great, though I have yet been able to work one myself.
Somehow this reply snuck pass me? I'm sorry for my delayed reply! Those are good tips! Thank you Yes, I would prefer working with GSD's, I'm not particularly fond of labs myself. I don't have any experience with malinois or dutchies -they are pretty close to GSD's aren't they? I just asked because they seem to have a very stubborn nature. They're either stubborn to do whatever they want or try as hard as they can to please you. haha I love my Border Collie, he is super smart! Great dogs. I don't know if he in particular would be a good detection dog, while he loves to please -when searching for something I have always noticed since he was a puppy he uses his eyes over his nose. Then he'll only search for a minute or so before grabbing some other random thing to throw.

Thank you for the organization names! I am going to look into them later today.

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