Following the scentPublished 12:16pm Monday, September 3, 2012
He is a highly specialized, highly trained law enforcement tool. But all he really cares about is his ball.
Tucker, a 3-year-old black Labrador, is one of the newest additions to the Alexander City Police Department. Tucker is trained to sniff out explosives and weapons.
“When he comes in contact with the odor, he is rewarded with the ball,” said Lt. Greg Pike. “This is not work. This is just playtime – it is just one big game to him.”
Pike is Tucker’s sole handler. Tucker was trained at Auburn University, and before the dog left training, Pike spent 10 weeks at Auburn learning how to work with him.
Tucker spent Friday afternoon searching the Sportplex football stadium for any hidden explosives.
“This is just a precaution, another tool in our toolbag,” Pike said. “We will sweep the stadium prior to all home games or other home functions.”
Tucker is also on call in case of bomb threats.
“We have already had one bomb threat in Coosa,” Pike said. “If a surrounding agency needs him, we will go assist him the best we can.”
When he is not searching for bombs, however, Tucker leads a pretty normal life. He lives at Pike’s home.
“He is just as playful as any other lab, not really a lot of differences,” Pike said. “He doesn’t get table scraps, though. He will play fetch, but I really limit his toy use. He doesn’t get to play with just anything.”