A German Shepherd who was thought to be impossible to rehome has found great success as a police dog for the West Yorkshire Police.
Most of us feel guilty if we forget to buy our dogs their preferred brand of premium dog food. However, when ‘Chance’ was found he was living outside a house in Bradford, in a small, dark kennel with no access to food or water.
He was rescued by the RSPCA, but they had difficulty rehoming him. Understandably, his behaviour was nervous and aggressive.
Gena Cameron from RSPCA Leeds, Wakefield & District Branch, said: “Our team of behaviour experts were his last chance really, which is where the name came from.”
Luckily for Chance, a visiting police dog handler asked about him and he was assessed as a police dog. He was given to dog handler PC Mick Kilburn to replace his dog who was due to retire.
It took ten weeks of intensive training, but Chance is now getting his licence. PC Kilburn said: “I couldn’t be more proud of how well Chance has done. I was delighted to be able to give him the ‘chance’ he deserved and look forward to working with him, serving the communities of West Yorkshire.”
Most West Yorkshire Police dogs are provided by the police’s ‘puppy scheme’, where the dogs are bred specifically to work for the police. The scheme began in 2006, however the police are happy to accept other dogs provided they can meet the very high standards required.
Inspector Lorna Meredith, who is in charge of the Dogs Section at West Yorkshire Police, said: “Chance is an excellent recruit, and has now been trained in tracking, searching, obedience and criminal work.”
It is incredibly positive news to see a neglected dog that has had its life turned around by the mixture of good training and love from everybody involved with its rehabilitation. Chance is now guaranteed a good life, if one that features a lot of hard work.
The West Yorkshire Police Force mainly uses German Shepherds for police work, however they also have a small number of Malinois. Their specialist dogs, which help to find explosives, drugs, firearms and money, can range from Springer Spaniels to Labradors.
Written by: Hannah