Mon, Feb 07, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Families encouraged to foster drug-sniffing dogs

Staff Writer, with CNA

The customs authorities are inviting families to provide foster homes for dogs that are being trained to work in anti-drug units, officials said yesterday.

Since July 2009 when the Directorate General of Customs began to train sniffer dogs to detect drugs, 12 canine squads have been assigned to Taiwan’s main gateways, the officials said.

Last year, the dogs helped customs agents find narcotics such as heroin, marijuana and ketamine valued at NT$150 million (US$5.13 million), according to the agency’s statistics.

However, the agency officials said, because of limited manpower at its detection dog breeding and training center, more foster families are needed.

The officials said greater interaction between the puppies and people helps the dogs to adapt better to their working environment.

The agency is looking for foster families with big yards to keep trainee dogs between the ages of two and 12 months, as the animals prefer to sleep and exercise outdoors, the officials said.

Families interested in providing foster homes for sniffer dogs can find further information at http: //eweb.customs.gov.tw.

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