Dogs do way more than simply serve as great companions

October 7, 2018

“I think dogs are the most amazing creatures. They give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive.” -Gilda Radner

We all know that dogs can act like service animals to assist humans with their everyday needs. However, this is not the only job that dogs can do.

A major job that dogs work is for the Police Force. K9’s are specifically trained to assist law enforcement in the line of duty. K9s can chase after suspects and subdue them until they can be handcuffed. They are also trained to protect their handler. Some of these K9s are trained in detection. Dogs have a keen sense of smell and possess up to 300 million olfactory receptors in their nose. This is in contrast to the six million humans possess.

Their sense of smell can assist in detecting different things that law enforcement may need to find. Whether it is a person on the run or a drug hidden in a car the dog can sniff it out. They can also be used in search and rescue to assist in finding bodies both alive and dead. They can also detect blood, explosives and in some cases, cancer. While talking about smelling there are some dogs that can sniff out when their owner’s blood sugar is too low.

Another job that dogs can get is working for the military. These dog jobs are similar to working with law enforcement, like serving as detectors and aiding with search and rescues. They can also act in tracking people or scouting ahead in situations. They can also act as sentries to alert soldiers if someone comes near.

Many breeds of dog work as herding dogs for farmers and ranchers. Some breeds like Australian Shepherds and Border Collies have it ingrained in their DNA to herd things. These dogs work closely alongside humans to drive livestock where they want them.

Sled dogs work in unison to move through impassible snowy terrains. They are used in expeditions where it is not possible for a vehicle to travel. Not only can they carry humans, but they can also carry supplies.

Many schools and other organizations use dogs as mascots. Having a live animal as a mascot has its advantages and disadvantages. One advantage is that the dog adds a likability factor to the mascot. People can relate more to a dog than a giant stuffed rooster portrayed by a human. A bad thing is that the dog needs care whenever it is not being used.

Once largely noticeable work field for dogs in in the entertainment industry. Whether it is Benji or Old Yeller, dogs appear in many different entertainment venues. Also in the entertainment area would be dog racing. Only nine states still race dogs in America.

Shawn Flowers is the lead animal control officer for Columbus Animal Control.

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