Sniffing Out Wildlife Crime

Illegal poaching in Africa is at an all-time high. At current rates, we could witness the extinction of the continent’s elephants and rhinos within our lifetime.

A key part of ending this slaughter is preventing traffickers from smuggling ivory and rhino horn out of Africa and into black markets across Asia and the U.S.

Enter AWF’s Canine Detection Units. These dog-and-handler teams are trained to sniff out wildlife crime, boasting a 90 percent accuracy rate.

Deployed at key air and seaports, the sniffer dogs and their handlers efficiently search cargo for illegal wildlife contraband.

They are trained using small pieces of ivory, making larger shipments easy to locate, yet the teams can detect even the smallest trace of contraband.

These canines are specially selected based on their friendliness and playfulness—two traits that indicate a strong work ethic.

When contraband is detected, the dogs are rewarded with their toy, ensuring they continue to enjoy their essential job.

Canine Detection Units are increasing the likelihood that traffickers are apprehended. This elevated risk is a powerful deterrent for other potential poachers.  

Learn more about these impressive teams, and see how AWF sniffer dogs are more than man’s best friend—they’re an elephant’s best friend too:


Environmental Investigation Agency Nancy McDaniel Wildlife Club of Kenya Amos Rono / Kenya Wildlife Service AWF / Cheryl-Samantha Owen Canine Specialist Services International

#dogs #animals #animalkingdom #wildlife #conservation #stopthetrafficking

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