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    Police force using K9Cam on dogs to help catch criminals

    NewsUK Dog NewsWednesday 17 April 2013
    A police force is trialing out a system of putting cameras on dogs backs to film vital and important missions. This will allow dogs to search buildings at no risks to police officers and provide vital visual evidence.
    Durham Police force are testing out a new camera called the K9Cam on the top of dog's backs. This will allow the recording of police arresting criminals and can be later used within a trial as dogs are able to record the whole mission. Also the cameras are useful for a dog to check if a building is safe before police enter.
    Durham police have been interesting in technology for some time. They have been working with Tactical Electronics UK since January last year modifying and adapting the camera to best fit their needs.
    The cameras themselves are fitted on to the dog’s torso and below this is a conformatable belt/vest that fits around the dogs body. Dogs are said to prefer this than a camera added to the head which can be irritating. 
    Already the new camera is in use and it has been involved in some high risk incidents in the north east of England.
    PC Dave Robinson who is part of the strategic team using the cameras stated that 'This camera - as opposed to the last camera - is mounted on the dog's back,' he said. 'And because dogs when they're tracking or searching normally wear a harness anyway, they're very, very comfortable with something being on their back.
    'Whereas a head-mounted unit, although it was very good, it was a big ask of a dog to wear it for a long period of time without interfering with it.'
    Russ Robson who works with Dave Robinson also added that “This is something that is readily available so it is part of our armed response vehicle, so if there's a firearms job or a high-risk person missing from home, we do not need to have it brought to us.
    'It fits on the body of the dog, rather than the headcams we had before, where we had to use quite a mature dog.
    'It also means we don't have to put up cordons, empty houses and close of roads.
    'We have the public, officers and other emergency services who we must safeguard first and we can send them in and clear the area.
    'The dog that we have got have all taken to it and there's been no adverse reactions to it - it's light and on a harness that they wear, so the dogs have seen some benefit.”
    Wearing head cameras have proved quite a challenge to dogs as they can be uncomfortable and also wobble around. With it being harnessed on the back it can prove very useful.
    Source: Daily Mail
    Photo: smpgallagher


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