Corrective Services NSW K9 Handlers with K9s Shadow Seb and Jazzie Pic: CSNSW
The unit responsible for sniffing out drugs and other contraband in NSW prisons has some new furry friends.
Eight specially-trained drug-detecting dogs and their K9 Handlers have graduated after an intensive 16 week course, and will now join more than 40 staff and their K9's already working on the frontline.
The dogs have been trained to recognise particular odours, with some also trained to discover drugs, mobile phones and even explosives.
“They’ll play an important role like the rest of the unit, which conducts regular searches at prisons across the state to help fight drugs and other contraband getting into correctional centres, " said K9 Training Manager Sharon Charman.
"This provides and promotes a safer environment for staff, inmates and visitors.”
The K9 handlers and their dogs will be based at prisons across the state including three in the Sydney metropolitan area.
K9 handler Ben Kember, who is partnered with 14-month old kelpie Jazzie said the dogs and handlers have hit it off, throughout their training:
“All the new recruits selected a dog at the beginning of the course, the personalities clicked and we stayed with them throughout the course,” Mr Kember said.
K9 handler Mick Campbell, who is partnered with 20-month old Border Collie kelpie cross Seb, said it’s great having a new mate on the job.
“It’s exciting when you achieve milestones with your dog such as when they first smell a particular drug odour,” Mr Campbell said.
“I love having a second family with the K9 unit and our furry friends.”