DOGS IN SERVICE
(We would be very happy to receive contributions in the form of
stories and photographs about dogs engaged in public service and individual stories where
dogs have displayed bravery and loyalty. Please e-mail the web master at :
Dogs have been used in Public service for a long time. They
are not only used for security but also for patrolling and crime detection. By tracking
and searching concealed persons and hidden objects. They have also been used to search for
hidden drugs. Many breeds such as GSDs, Labradors, Rottweilers, Schnauzers, Bloodhounds,
Dobermanns , Beagles and Cocker Spaniels are being used.
Search and rescue dogs have been trained to find people hidden under the snow, under
debris of buildings and during disasters. their scenting ability and desire to perform is
excelled by no other animal.
Guide Dogs are dogs that help the blind to "see" through a maze of traffic.
Training dogs for such services is a long drawn out expensive and exhaustive effort. Only
a few dogs out of the many taken up initially will prove to be suitable enough to be
trained for such speciality work. If not for the generous contributions from well-wishers,
suitable dogs cannot be placed with the blind who need them.
|A Write-up from Canines Can Care
(Click Here to see photographs)
Dogs for the Physically Challenged
All through history dogs have served man, in peace and war,
guarding his home and livestock from intruders, carrying and pulling heavy loads and being
a loyal companion. In times of war, dogs have served as messengers, sentries, scouts and
lifesavers. In the modern-day fight against crime, dogs assist in sniffing out drugs and
explosives and tracking down wanted criminals. In recent times dogs have been busy giving
a new lease of life to people who are physically challenged.
India has a huge and ever-growing population of physically disabled
people and not enough facilities to help them. Though a lot of Government and
Non-Government Agencies are doing their best to alleviate some of their problems, there
are so many other unexplored options.
For the past few years the Mumbai based unit "CANINES CAN
CARE" has worked to train dogs to aid individuals who are physically challenged. The
dogs help the handicapped to achieve their desire to be independent by performing tasks
that are physically demanding.
It is very difficult for an able-bodied person to imagine the plight of
a physically handicapped person. Trivial daily tasks which we take for granted like
picking up a fallen object or opening a door, present a daunting challenge to the
With most disabilities the person suffers from a limited use of their
hands, feet and fingers. In many cases the person is unable to close their fist or to
grasp an object or to pull and push, making the simplest of tasks frustrating and
incapable. This is where an Assistance Dog can aid the person in being independent. A
fully trained Assistance Dog can understand up to fifty commands. A few of the tasks they
can carry out are listed below.
up dropped objects
articles in a waste paper basket
and closing doors
Speak on command
to alert of an intruder / Barking for help
help in an emergency
unloading washing machine
and off light switches
from a cupboard, shelf, refrigerator or a drawer
as a support
items from one person to another
A Canine Companion also dramatically
enhances the life of an adult or child with a disability by helping him/her overcome
physical and social barriers. The Canine Companion becomes a loyal friend, providing
constant companionship and unconditional love.
Indias first fully trained
Assistance Dog is a black Labrador called Honey. Honey is capable of understanding up to
fifty Assistance Dog commands, and regularly gives demonstrations all over the country.
Concurrently, the organisation has one puppy in training who is living
with her physically challenged companion and one puppy who is growing up in a Puppy Raiser
home. Both are Mumbai based.
We at "Canines Can Care" are constantly striving to help
disabled people gain independence with the help of assistance dogs. It is the dedication
of "Canines Can Care" volunteers, puppy raisers, members and the generosity of
donors that make this remarkable program possible in India.
There are many ways in which a person can help sustain and promote the
work "Canines Can Care" has set out to accomplish. If you believe in
independence and freedom for all living creatures please show your support.
For more information, contact:
Canines Can Care, 806 B, Empire Mahal, Khodadad Circle, Dadar, Mumbai 400 014
Tel: 24148576, 2363 3365
Here are some photographs of 'Honey' in action
Honey Shutting the Door
Honey Picking up the Telephone
Honey Picking up a Pencil
Honey Dropping Article in Waste-paper Basket
Honey Covering Owner with Blanket
A Letter from Cathleen in the
My name is Cathleen. I am 13 years old. My best friends little sister
is autistic, and has a companion dog names Beaumont. He is a black lab, and has been
living with them for about 2 years, now. He came from a service dog organization in
Massachusetts. Well, I loved Beaumont, and had never really had a dog of my own- only when
i was little- so I looked into getting a service puppy. I would train im to be a service
dog by socailizing him, and house breaking him, then he would go back to the training
center. I told my parents about it, and they didn't want one. I finally persuaded them
into it and in July of 2001, we got Marley, an Australian shepherd who was the most
adorable dog anyone in the world could have ever imagined. He was simply perfect, happy,
fuzzy, and all around adorable. He was mostly black, with brown and white legs, and a
white stripe on his head. Everyone I knew thought he was sooooo adorable. He was a pain to
take out, as all dogs are, but it was worth it. Marley was very hyper, and was out of
control sometimes, being so hyper, so the people at the training center asked us to bring
him down for an evaluation. We did and he was brought into the center for being a hearing
dog. It was heartbreaking that day. We didn't think that he would go so soon, it had only
been 5 months. He is now in training and will graduate in the end of April. I am so proud
of him and at the same time, incredibly sad. my family is planning on getting another
puppy in the summer. If anyone is thinking of becoming a puppy raider, you definitly
should. it is fun, and you are so proud of the dog after you give them back. Also, you are
allowed to bring them into public places, with the store's approval. Marley was so cute in
his little blue cape, saying that he was a puppy in training.
Thank you for reading this,