Different Types Of Working Dogs And The Jobs They Are Suitable For
While most dogs are chosen as companions for people, others are trained for more serious jobs. Working dogs are generally chosen for their natural instincts which are then carefully honed through intensive training in order to perform specific tasks. Dog breed organizations and kennel clubs categorize certain dog breeds as ‘working dogs’ and place them into a working group. While these dogs traditionally carried out actual work like herding or guarding, the work performed by today’s work dogs may or may not include such physical functions.
This article explains some working dog types and the specific jobs they are trained to perform. And if you love dogs and enjoy working with them, you might want to consider opening up a dog walking franchise.
Also known as ‘Assistance Dogs’, these dogs have specifically been trained to assist people suffering from disabilities. A service dog is properly trained on how to behave in all types of public situations in order to allow the dog to accompany its handler anywhere. It is important to distinguish service dogs from ‘Therapy Dogs’ and ‘Emotional Dogs’
Some examples of service dogs include:
- Guide dogs for the visually impaired
- Mobility Assistance service dogs
- Guide dogs for those with hearing impairments
The most common types of dog breeds used for service-related jobs include:
- Labrador retriever
- Golden retriever
- German shepherd
- Standard poodle
Therapy dogs are certified for use in animal-assisted therapy as part of a therapeutic plan for medical patients.
These highly trained therapy dogs provide emotional support to injured or sick people. They are often taken to visit patients in hospitals and nursing homes, or to schools and daycare centres to help educate young children about dogs and how to treat them.
Although any dog breed regardless of age and size can become a therapy dog, they must have the right temperament and undergo the necessary training to teach them socialization skills. Therapy dogs are generally well-trained, well-socialized, even-tempered, and non-fearful.
Police Service Dogs
Called K-9s, these service dogs are specifically trained to assist police officers and other law-enforcement personnel in the line of active duty. They are highly trained to protect their personal handlers and how to chase down and restrain suspected criminals when they try to run away. Some K-9s are specifically trained as sniffer dogs using their strong sense of smell to detect illegal substances at places like airports and harbors. These dogs are also known as ‘Detection Dogs’.
The most common types of dog breeds used in the police service are German Shepherds and Belgian Malinois.
Military Service Dogs
Military working dogs are trained to assist military personnel with their operations. These dogs take part in search and rescue operations and can be used as trackers, scouts, sentries, and detectors. Most military service dogs are Belgian Malinois, Dutch shepherds, and German shepherds.
Chosen for their exceptional sense of smell, these dogs are highly trained and motivated by positive enforcement. They are trained to sniff out a specific drug or group of substances as well as blood, explosives, and human remains. Some are even trained to detect unusual things like bed bugs, animal feces, blood sugar levels, and even cancer. Detection dogs are mainly used in law enforcement but can also be used in health care and wildlife biology. One of the oldest ways of using detection dogs was to hunt for truffles.
Dog breeds most often used as detection dogs include Golden retrievers, Labrador retrievers, and beagles.
Search and Rescue Dogs
Great agility and an exceptional sense of hearing and smell are important attributes in these highly trained dogs. They perform many different tasks such as tracking, avalanche rescue, cadaver location, and specialized search operations.
Breeds chosen for these services include Golden retrievers, German shepherds, Labrador retrievers, border collies, and Leonbergers.