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Friday, February 20, 2009

Milton's K9 Receives New Training

From The City of Milton

Raijin, the City Of Milton's newest police dog candidate, recently completed extensive training in narcotics detection and trailing. Milton Police Officer and Georga K9 Academy owner Kelli Collins and her partner Jeff Schettler have been training Raijin since he was around ten weeks old.

Trailing is the K9 dicipline of following a specific human odor from a person's start point, along the path the person traveled and finally to the place they ended. It is by far the most difficult of all K9 diciplines because it requires intense effort on the part of both the dog and handler, often over many miles.

Trailing is different from tracking since it is based on scent descrimination. The dog detects the individual based on their unique sent since no two people are alike. Additionally, trailing is not based on exactly where the person might have stepped but rather where their scent drifted.

Human odor is unique to the individual and is made up of thousands of microscopic skin particles that slough off the body through normal activity. The rate of production is relative to the individual's emotional state. Someone angry, afraid, or upset will normally produce far more "odor" than a calm person.

Raijin's training has been ongoing for almost a year now. He attended his first formal K9 school hosted by Georgia K9 Academy in Canton, GA. This course was for police trailing dog handlers from as far away as Modesto, CA. Raijin will attend many more schools over the course of his career. He is scheduled to work with his new K9 handler from the Milton Police Department sometime between March and May of this year.

Raijin is just over a year old and was donated to the City by Dr. Joanne Roesner of the Loving Hands Animal Clinic in Milton.

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