World Anti-Drug Day: Dogs indispensable for Colombia in busting drug-related crimes

Dogs play an important role for the Colombian counter-narcotics force in carrying out busts against cargoes, land mines and illegal laboratories.

(Soundbite) Oscar Chacon, Manager of Anti-Narcotics Dog Team
“Really, canines are very important to help us sustain the fight against drugs, as they smell better than any machine or any technology we have at the moment.”

Dogs have contributed to the security of Colombia for more than a century.

Since 1972, they have been an indispensable part for the fight against drugs.

(Soundbite) Oscar Chacon, Manager of Anti-Narcotics Dog Team
“It sounds simple, but not all dogs deliver with strength and dedication, which is just what we seek for. When we make the assessment test to select dogs, we want dogs eager to find their objects with perseverance in search.”

Competence is determined by size, which should be medium, as well as adaptability to different terrains and climates.

The short-haired ones have proved to be the most capable, and the most probable to win the Medal of Merit for Canines after serving various assignments.

(Soundbite) Yeimi Paola Bucuru Rodriguez, Veterinary Manager
“More or less, the working time of a canine is eight years. Then we will evaluate whether it can continue to work. Some activities are done to see if he can continue with its job. If not, it retires.”

Currently, about 1,000 canines are serving various anti-drug tasks and campaigns in Colombia, which has been seen as one of the major sources of illicit substances in Latin America.

Each year, the government invests 140,000 U.S. dollars to keep the special team live and kicking.

Leave a Comment