US expert praises NZ detector dog training

Last updated 14:45 28/02/2014
SEAN WILLIS/Fairfax NZ

Detector dog trainer Alan Willox is teaching Labrador dogs how to sniff out bio-security hazards at the airport with various training exercises.

Susan Friedman
lawrence smith
Professor of Psychology Susan Friedman from Utah State University leads sniffer dog Georgie through his paces at the biosecurity kennels at Auckland airport.

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An American animal expert has hailed the training given to detector dogs in New Zealand.

"I am so impressed with the sensitivity of training," Utah State University psychology professor Susan Friedman, told trainers today.

She was speaking at a Ministry for Primary Industries dog detector unit in Auckland which is training an increased number of dogs.

The ministry says it needs 40 dogs throughout the country at ports and airports.

Friedman checked the training today and was impressed.

"It is done to a very high level here," she said.

"They treat the dogs with respect, maximising their learning ability with their training. It is a very impressive unit."

Friedman has pioneered a form of animal training around the world.

She is running a seminar in New Zealand and has students from 22 countries taking part in her courses on applied behaviour analysis.

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- Fairfax Media

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