No more pointy ears for tsa - Page 1

Pedigree Database


by joanro on 25 December 2018 - 18:12

Washington Examiner:

We’ve made a conscious effort in TSA ... to use floppy ear dogs," TSA Administrator David Pekoske said during a recent tour of operations at Washington Dulles International Airport northern Virginia.

"We find the passenger acceptance of floppy ear dogs is just better. It presents just a little bit less of a concern," Pekoske said. "Doesn’t scare children."

Now they can start working on hiring humans who don't scare children - or anyone else.

Around 80 percent of the 1,200 canines TSA uses nationwide are ones with droopy ears, versus 20 percent that have cone-shaped ones.

TSA employs the second-highest number of dogs of any federal agency. Dogs retire daily from the agency this year due to the force's aging population, but TSA is using it as an opportunity to grow its floppy ear population, which are technically classified as sporting or hunting breeds.

Over the past 12 months, 80 percent of the dogs TSA purchased from vendors were sporting breeds. Christopher Shelton, branch manager of the TSA canine training center in San Antonio, Texas, said part of the reason TSA has purchased more "sporting" dogs is because breeders are increasingly raising these types of dogs.

Any reasonably intelligent dog can be trained to assist the TSA. The agency uses five types of sporting breeds: Labrador Retrievers, German Short-haired Pointers, Wirehaired Pointers, Vizslas, and Golden Retrievers. It also uses two types of pointy-ear, or working breed, dogs: the German Shepherd and Belgian Malinois.

The public has more contact with TSA than just about any other agency of the federal government. For many travelers, it doesn't matter if a dog has pointy or droopy ears because they are scared of all dogs. Are pointy-ear dogs more scary?

I love German Shepherds, perhaps the most handsome dog around. I can see where some people might be intimidated by them, but isn't that the point? I have yet to meet a golden or black lab who can truly be intimidating. They'd rather play with you than bite you.

I suppose as long as the dogs can do the job, the breed doesn't matter.

The Transportation Security Administration, famous for scaring passengers with their intrusive, even sexually suggestive searches, has decided to become kinder and gentler.

They are getting rid of pointy-eared dogs in favor of floppy-eared canines because droopy ears don't "scare children."

Washington Examiner:

We’ve made a conscious effort in TSA ... to use floppy ear dogs," TSA Administrator David Pekoske said during a recent tour of operations at Washington Dulles International Airport northern Virginia.

"We find the passenger acceptance of floppy ear dogs is just better. It presents just a little bit less of a concern," Pekoske said. "Doesn’t scare children."

Read more:

by duke1965 on 25 December 2018 - 19:12

generally speaking, huntingbreeds are far less suitable than shepherds, as huntingbreeds are traditionally bred for "soft mouth " so non posessive, and that is quality desired for training detection dogs

we have seen TSA testing 30 huntingdogs, only to buy three, so it will take some time before TSA will get the numbers they desire

furthermore, the "second hand " market for huntingdogs is nothing like the one for shepherds, traditionally hunters like to resell to hunters only, most of time, so I will see if they keep this going, also with the demand of detectors for the cargo screening program coming up

by joanro on 25 December 2018 - 19:12

It's not about efficiency, Duke, but political correctness. Gubmit could not care less what breeds are most effective....long as the chirrin are not skered!

by joanro on 25 December 2018 - 19:12

Breed flop eared gsd!


by Hundmutter on 25 December 2018 - 19:12

What exactly does TSA work involve ? (Sorry, don't know what the initials are short for). Are these drug / weapon / money seeking dogs at Customs, or are they more to do with the immigration side, and sorting out who may be genuine entrants to the country ?

If the former, I can understand the sense in using less 'threatening' (perception) breeds, and it is certainly quite usual over here for Port and Airport search dogs to be of a variety of breeds, including Labradors, Beagles, Border Collies, various Pointers and Spaniels - to name just some of those in use. For a long time now, this work has not been done by the big working breeds; not just because they want less intimidating dogs for the work but precisely because you are more or less guaranteed a softer nature that is less scary for people, children in particular, and soft mouths; and also because many other breeds have proved themselves just as efficient at search tasks as the Shepherds and other guarding breeds.

Make no mistake, there are GSDs etc waiting in the wings to be brought forward if a passenger proves antagonistic to Customs Officers, and isn't worried by the presence of a soft-eared animal !

But a few GSDs with soft enough mouths to use as Gun Dogs do, and have always, existed, and could still be used in this way; and I am curious as to whether TSA might consider using some of the GSDs who have 'floppy' ears, enough of which do exist provided humans can keep away from their ears with card and glue-guns, even though unwanted for Show purposes ! [Do not know if Malis have similar problems ?]

by duke1965 on 25 December 2018 - 19:12

they can want all they want, but if they need 400 dogs and can find 250 suitable huntingbreeds, what are they going to do, lower standarts ?, buy only 250?, or take shepherds to get the total amount

by joanro on 25 December 2018 - 21:12

Duke, lower the standards, which they already have done.

Hundmuttr, tsa is transportation safety administration....airport ....screening of all passengers at airports. Created after 9/11 . Looking for suicide boom bers by searching all Americans, including old wheelchair bound grandmas and toddlers.

One of the pups I imported from Czech, the customs actually had two sniffer dogs inspect the pups crate, one dog finished then they brought another a while later. But they are not allowed to in no one covered head to toe shall be infringed.

Tsa spent millions on experimental sniffer machines that all passengers were to pass through....huge fail. They determined the very best detectors of boom bs were the least expensive and most basic...the k9.
Now they think drop ears are better at keeping airliner passengers safe.


by Jessejones on 26 December 2018 - 01:12

Sitting in Atlanta airport right now.

Flew out out this morning from my hometown and was graciously sniffed by a big neutered Weimaraner.

Took his job very seroiusly...walking up and down rows of hundreds of folks and kids, sniffing at VERY close quarters...sometimes nose 1“ from pants of passengers, adults and kids alike.

The TSA assistant had to keep announcing „don’t pet....let dog do his job“.

He didn’t even flinch an eye or nostril when sniffing my pants covered with my dogs für, nor any interest in my sandwich in my backpack. Very serious indeed.

GSD  might intimidate in such close quarters...
....not me or any one reading here....but funny enough, I found myself with a twitch of mild intimidation by the yellow eyes of the Weimaraner though, even though I know better. 😉


by Prager on 26 December 2018 - 03:12

Why not train detection bees or mice?

 or rats? Some people here will be ecstatic to learn that they train bomb detection rats with clickers. :

by duke1965 on 26 December 2018 - 08:12

seen the rats work, very slow, but cheap, and for sure they wouldnot scare passengers on the airport LOL


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