In Pune, the railway protection force (RPF) is soon going to have a Dog Training Centre. RPF is going to start RPF K9 School which will be the third largest canine training centre in India after Delhi and Coimbatore.
“While the permanent centre will come up at Todiwala Road, we will start a temporary facility at Shivajinagar by next month. The RPF parade ground will be used. The first batch — comprising 14 dogs and 28 handlers — for the central railways will be arriving for training. The school will be called RPF K9 School, Pune, and the railway board has already permitted the same,” a senior official of the Pune division told TOI.
Still in development stage though but once the centre starts running on it full capacity, it will be able to conduct and train two batches of 15 dogs each, along with their handlers.
“Each dog requires two handlers and the training for the dogs start when they are still puppies. The 32-week training covers tracking and sniffing of objectionable objects, drugs, explosives etc. The thrust is on strengthening the existing surveillance systems and adding more to the current infrastructure. With the third training centre starting in Pune, RPF security systems will become stronger. Canines from all rail divisions can be trained at this facility. Also, the facility can be used by other security agencies,” the official said.
He added that while the current dog squad is performing well, there are going to be two new additions to the dog squad.
“Right now, we have a total of seven dogs, which are trained in sniffing and tracking. Breeds include labrador and doberman. We have finalized the purchase of two Belgian Shephard puppies and they should be reaching us soon. They too will be trained at the same facility as trackers and sniffers. The cost of each dog can be between Rs 70,000 and Rs 80,000. The Belgian Shephard breed is very agile and is being used by other security agencies like the CRPF in the Naxalite-hit areas in different states,” the official said.
Reference: The Time of India
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