Sniffer Dogs Breeding In Army Dog Center Located in the Civil Aviation Colony, the unit is the first training and breeding center for sniffer dogs in Pakistan by the customs department.
“We have 10 dogs with two females, all Labradors, Dog handler and trainer working since 2009 at the facility following his retirement from the army where he got his initial training and employed for the same job for 18 years.
Sniffer Dogs Breeding Army Dog Center
“Labradors are human-friendly, quite well-focused on the job once they are trained in a particular area and have remarkable sense of smell,” he explained when asked about the reasons for keeping a specific breed for sniffing out narcotics.
Dogs have time and again proven to be one of the major assets for the armed forces, the police, customs and other associated organisations while in the performance of their duties. The canine instinct proves invaluable in many cases. Keeping in view their importance, the dogs are trained in the following disciplines:-
- Guard Dogs
- Tracker Dogs
- Mine Detection Dogs
- Narcotics Sniffing Dogs
- Arms/Explosive search Dogs
- Avalanche rescue Dogs
- Search and Rescue Dogs
“A trained dog costs between Rs400,000 and Rs700,000. They are fed with imported food, routinely examined and kept in air-conditioned rooms as weather gets hot,” he told Dawn.
These facilities, he points out, are well justified given the tough job the dogs do. “They have a very demanding job as they are few in number with a large area for surveillance; the air freight unit, the Jinnah International Airport, Port Qasim and Keamari sea ports. As you visit the place, four dogs are already on duty,” he said.
Conversation with the staff showed that it’s not just the time, a big monitoring area and the huge workloadwhich made the job strenuous for the animal, it’s also the nature of their task that reduces their life span.
“Our dog has an active life of eight years but they do die early as compared to their average life, which is around 15 years. This is so because narcotics smell acts like a slow poison and damage their body,” he said.
Being aware of these sensitivities and to strengthen efforts against narcotics smuggling, the customs department made a plan to increase the number of sniffer dogs through a cost-efficient way at the facility initially set up in 2001 with the departmental resources.