Earlier this week I got stopped by the Texas HP radar for a few miles over the limit. The officer asked for permission to do a drug search which I declined. He then said he'd get a K9 to do an external inspection and had the right to hold me for 15 minutes for the dog to arrive. Well it took much longer and the guy got abusive.Finally the dog and his escort arrived. He excercised the dog a bit and got him ready to sniff the car. He trotted with the dog as it ran around the car at least three times with no interest. Then the dog cop tried to get the dog interested in the wheel well at the gas cap but the dog took no interest. Next he ran the dog around the car again and stopped the dog at the trunk lid, stuck one hand in the crack between the bottom of the trunk lid and the body and made the dog put its nose there.

After a bit the dog reared and started scratching the trunk lid. This looked bogus to me as I felt he was annoying the dog and the dog jumped up to be left alone. The cop asked me for the key and I asked why and he said "didn't I see the positive dog reaction?" I said I thought it was bogus and forced and he told me that's the way it works. One cop, there were three, opened the trunk and immediately pulled the spare tire, looked at it and the tire well and put it back.

Then after a short discussion the second cop took it out, looked and put back. Another short discussion and another cop took it out, bounced it, shook it while listening to it and put it back. They didn't look in any luggage, in any packages or elsewhere! The car was a rental from Avis in Tulsa, OK and the cop said Okla. rentals were a big drug problem. After they let me go with the paint and plastic all scratched up by the dog 's claws I started thinking.

I was moving with the traffic at about 75 MPH and hadn't passed anyone and had a Texas car in front and behind. Texas cars have front tags but Oklahoma doesn't so that's how they selected me or had a spotter somewhere.
The scene was like The Three Stooges with a dog and the dog was the smartest one. I've seen drug dogs in action at many airports and when they smell something suspicious in luggage they just stop and wag their tail waiting a pat or snack. What I want to know is was what happened to me a coerced positive or the way the K9s work. Or is there a good site where I can get the basics as the cops told me I know nothing about drug sniffiing dogs. I'm over 60 and been with dogs most my life. thanks
Hank
interest. Next he ran the dog around the car again and stopped the dog at the trunk lid, stuck one ... was bogus and forced and he told me that's the way it works. One cop, there were three, opened the

I don't think a site on drug dogs is going to help you much. First of different trainers/organizations will teach different cues from the dog. But also you are much more likely to simply get information on how it is supposed to be. One problem is that K9-officers are rarely any level of expert in either dog training or dog behavior. They are taught how to work their dogs. They are taught what they need to know to maintain and continue training. But taking the most generous view of the events described it is possible the officer did not recognize that he was cueing the dog.I don't think the dog was reacting in annoyance or wanting to be left alone. But it looks like the dog understood that a reaction was desired and therefore gave it. Since most people in your position aren't able to collect and record evidence of the events the officers had very little to lose by their behavior. Its a shame, but it is difficult to do anything about it. Submitting a complaint would be appropriate, especially if you make it a useful complaint.

A useful complaint is one that contains a useful solution. In this case the useful solution offered would be that the officer receive additional training in avoiding creating a false positive. Alone it won't change anything. But CC the complaint to appropriate police watch bodies and if others do the same some good may come of it. The usefulness of substance detection dogs is impaired if they lack credibility. And intentionally or unintentionally miscuing a dog to a false positive impairs credibility.

Diane Blackman
http://dog-play.com /
http://dog-play.com/shop2.html
I've seen drug dogs in action at many airports and when they smell something suspicious in luggage they just stop ... was what happened to me a coerced positive or the way the K9s work. Or is there a good site

Every dog reacts differently to scent recognition and they can be trained to offer a trained behavior or the handler can just rely on his ability to read the behavior they naturally offer. Neither approach is better or worse and there is no general rule about it. All you need is a unique behavior pattern that can be backed up with training records. You didn't see a coerced positive. Handlers will indicate to a dog an area that they want checked. There are a number of explanations of why a dog might give a false positive, from residue from previous contents of the trunk to simple fatigue and desire to please. You'll find links to information on scentwork at www.nasar.org
Lynn K.