-- Valdosta, Ga. -- April 24, 2012 --
K-9 units from around the country came to Valdosta to train with the Lowndes County Sheriff's Office. Eyewitness News reporter Eames Yates was there to see the dogs in action.
They used a car with 50 pounds of marijuana in it to train the dogs. About 20 canine units took part. Teams came from South Florida and Arkansas to participate.
One of the trainers, Marsha Peavy, described what it takes for a dog to qualify as a drug dog. She said "the four drives that we're looking for are hunt, air scent, retrieve and prey. And as long as a dog has those four drives than they are trainable."
The Deputy Canine Handler for the Lowndes County Sheriff's Office, Casey Cobe, said "It's a partnership between the handler and the dog. A lot of people don't understand that a dog is not a machine. It's as individual as you or and I. They have their own individual personalities, they have good days and bad days. So we have to strike a balance between handler and dog and marry those two together."
Over 200,000 pounds of marijuana was seized in Georgia last year.
A dog's nose can be up to 10-thousand times stronger than a human.