Poodle and Lab Train to be K9 Officers

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. --  It's not the type of dog you'd usually find fighting crime.

But, a poodle here in the Ozarks is preparing to prevent crime-- especially in local schools and businesses.

The poodle and another dog, a lab, have both been training for about two months-- gearing up to take a bite out of crime in the Ozarks.

"They're about one month from being ready for their assignments," said SMOJS CEO Tim Brenner.


The dogs may look like your average family pets, but when it comes to being top dog-- they're on their way there.

"We have a  standard poodle, a lab, and our bomb dog is a belgian malinois," said Brenner.  "We have six dogs on our team and some of the dogs are local animal rescues that would've normally been put down-- but we've retrained them to be useful in the community."

From narcotics to guns to bombs, these dogs are getting ready to come to the rescue.

"The dogs can be used to locate those items," said Brenner.  "Or just conduct random checks to randomly check for those items to be a deterrent from having students bring a weapon or explosive device to school."

Nitro, a belgian malinois, has been fighting crime for three years.

"Currently, we are covering 22 counties," said Brenner.

In about a month, Bane the poodle and Bradie the lab will join him.

"The neat thing about the poodle and the lab-- they're a non threatening breed," said Brenner.  "So it's a very social, non threatening animal to come into the school system."


"It's kind of like an excited parent when  your child walks for the first time," said Bradie's Handler, Austin Nystrom.  "The first time you let the dog through and he finds what he is looking for, you feel like super-dad there for a minute.  He's done amazing.  He knows when he comes in this room, it's time to work."

And with a nationwide increase in the number of students bringing weapons to school, the fight in these dogs will soon be put to good use.

"If we find one gun in a school that didn't get used against the kids in that school, that dog's life is absolutely what it's meant to be for," said Nystrom.

The company, Southern Missouri Judicial Services Investigations and Protection, is privately contracted to work in schools and businesses throughout the Ozarks in 22 counties.
  


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