Police to fit sniffer dogs with micro chips

The Punjab Police is in the process of buying 60 sniffer dogs, who will be fitted with a micro chip containing their profile and family history to ensure that they are not stolen.

Sometime ago, a committee formed to buy dogs for the state police, decided to purchase 50 Labradors and 10 German Shepherds, said sources. Initially, tenders were floated and two firms applied. However, as these could not supply so many dogs, it was decided that dogs will be purchased from individual kennel clubs in Punjab after getting due quotations.

The police are buying one and three-month-old pups who will be fitted with micro chips — each worth Rs 250. The chips will contain details like date of birth, name, blood line, parents names, breeders name and colour among others.

The one-month-old dogs will be kept with kennel owners for two more months, following which, they will be vaccinated and then taken by the police. The three-month-old pups, on the other hand, will be sent to the Punjab Police Academy in Phillaur where they will be trained for six months and then report to duty. They will be trained to sniff explosives, weapons, currency and chemicals among others.

At present, there are 12 dogs with the police and all are on VVIP duty with working hours between 8 to 10 hours every day. For over a decade now, the police had not purchased any dogs — many were turning blind and most died at the age of six due to over work, said sources.

"Dogs can work for three to four hours a day. If they are made to work more, their smelling power decreases and they suffer from fatigue. They can also go blind if they are exposed to chemicals and explosives and are not properly fed and taken care of," private veterinarian Dr H S Grover said.

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