Dogs for Conversation

rights conservation wildlife poaching
Tuesday, 4 October, 2011 - 14:55

Different types of dogs play various roles in our lives. Apart from hunting, protecting their owners, dogs could also be used to chase unwanted animals in the airport runways, guard the livestock and play other roles in the society

The bond between us and our family dog, once a wild Gray Wolf found in parts of the northern hemisphere, was formed more than 15 thousand years ago with an undeniable mutual friendship that has outlasted hundreds of generations. For centuries, domestic dogs have worked with humans as hunters and protectors and humans have in turn provided them with reliable food, shelter, protection and above all, companionship. There is no doubt that our dogs are more often than not our very best friends, and in fact, our most reliable and trustworthy helpers. With skills and talents, we are learning how to harness more everyday.  

The turn of the century brought with it an urgency to find solutions to the myriad of social and environmental issues we are faced with. By harnessing the natural instincts, traits and abilities of our oldest partner and companion, the Endangered Wildlife Trust is finding solutions to combating some of the greatest conflicts we are currently facing between wildlife and humans.

Meet Joey. Joey is a Turkish breed, called an Anatolian Shepherd Dog. At the tender age of six weeks, this remarkable puppy begins life with his new family of livestock.  In his first year on the job, Joey has survived poisonous snake bites, kept his herd safe from jackals and other predators and even spent a few long, cold nights by the side of lambs that had strayed from their herd.

Meet Tina. Tina is a Border Collie who has been trained by top dog training specialists in South Africa to work on the airport runways – chasing birds, Aardvark and other vulnerable animals off the airfield to safer areas. Tina has thus reduced collisions between aeroplanes and birds and wildlife. Due to these dogs effectiveness, the Airports Company South Africa is investing more time and personnel in the training, development and implementation of Airport Working Dogs.

Meet Diesel. Diesel is a Staffie who has been trained by his conservationist owner to identify and differentiate Cheetah scat from any other scat in the bush. Diesel has thus reduced research time by 75 percent, giving conservationists more time to focus on solutions to the issues raised by Diesel’s efforts.

We are proud of our newest staff members, and with your involvement, the EWT can continue to train and develop a national conservation team of working dogs. By pledging your support to a conservation working dog, you will be enabling Mother Nature to benefit from the invaluable qualities of Man’s best friend.

Click here to support the Endangered Wildlife Trust with a donation.

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