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Nottinghamshire Police has welcomed its first female general purpose police dogs to the ranks.
PD Night and PD Vega are now primed and ready for action after completing an arduous 13-week training process with their handlers.
Night, a two-year-old Belgian Malinois, and Vega, a 16-month-old Dutch Herder Cross, are general purpose animals who will be used to chase down suspects, locate evidence and search for people.
Vega, who was formally licensed last week, will be out on patrol later this month. Night has now been licensed for several weeks and is already on patrol.
The majority of general purpose police dogs working in the UK are male, but female dogs can also make exceptional working animals.
Indeed, PD Belle from Avon and Somerset Police was recently crowned the UK’s best police dog after a series of national trials held in Nottingham.
Dog trainer PC Nick Dachtler explained: “The main difference between male and female dogs is physical size, but what ultimately matters in a police dog is the size of its fight.
“When we assess an animal for training, we are looking for three main qualities – courage, drive and the ability to focus.
“Night and Vega have these qualities in abundance and are also two of the fastest runners in the force.
“Under the care of their handlers, I am confident that they will turn into truly excellent police dogs.”
Nottinghamshire Police currently operates 26 police dogs – a mixture of general-purpose animals and specialist sniffer dogs trained to locate items like drugs, cash and firearms.
Dogs are sourced from a variety of locations and have mostly been bred specifically for the role.
Night came from a breeding programme at West Midlands Police and Vega from a specialist breeder in the Netherlands.
Their handlers, meanwhile, are accepted for the role only after they have completed a minimum of two years of service and completed an advanced driving course.
To learn more about joining Nottinghamshire Police visit www.nottinghamshire.police.uk/careers
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