Santa Clara County Agriculture Detector Dog, Tank, was born on January 27th, 2018. He is a chocolate lab, surrendered as a puppy by his owners and rescued from the Humane Society shelter by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to be trained as a detector dog.
Tank is a food driven, energetic and extremely intelligent lab that loves to work which made him a perfect candidate for the Agriculture Detector Dog Program. He was transferred to the USDA National Detector Dog Training Center (NDDTC) in Newnan, Georgia to start his new training. While in school, Tank learned to alert on five initial fruits: apple, guava, citrus, mango and stone fruit. Since then, Tank has increased his “nose pallet”. He gets rewards for alerting on any kind of an “agriculture smell” so he has now intercepted flowers, trees, plants, fruit, soil, snakes and insects found in the pet trade, and lemons illegally being shipped through a parcel carrier. His olfactory senses are so strong that he has even been able to detect a plant culture sample in a petri dish for lab analysis.
When Tank is not working, he likes to spend time with his handler chasing balls at the dog park and playing with his favorite neighbor, Major (Contra Costa County’s agriculture canine). His favorite treat is banana with almond butter.