February 1. And on this day in 1920, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police began their operations – although the original mounted poilce in Canada date back to the 1870’s. The RCMP are the men and women in the flashy red uniforms and big hats who ride around Canada on horses catching bad people. OK. OK. Today they do it in patrol cars and wearing the red uniform seems to be for formal occasions and not everyday attire.
In 1935, three German Shepherds were the start of the dog unit of the RCMP. According to their website, to this day they still only use German Shepherds for general duty work, but other breeds are used for Scent Detection. And I probably shouldn’t report this – but they usually use male dogs.
Only 17% of dogs who enter their training program at about a year of age are actually successful in completing it. Wonder what the success rate would be if more girls were entered… Just sayin’.
Some interesting facts from their website:
- A dog can search a car in about three minutes. (If it was a PON looking for food, the search could be done in 1.3 minutes.)
- Dogs can work up to four hours with rest intervals. (FOUR hours?! When my human goes to work, we are on guard duty for more than that! I want that gig!)
- On average, a police service dog retires at the age of eight. (Einstein would be nearing retirement!)
I do think that all the dogs who work with police and military are pretty special. They protect us from bad people, they can detect drugs and explosives, they perform search and rescue operations and can find human remains. They have a tough job to do and they develop a very special bond with their handlers. We really owe them a big thanks for all they do!
So hats off to the RCMP humans and their dogs today and all dogs who work in service for others! Oh and if you need a dog to search for food – just give me a call. I can do contract work….
Have a good one! Peace and paws up!
Seizure-free days: 20