November 23 2014 Latest news:
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
There’s a new dog in town – and he’s offering a unique service.
Loki, a 15-month-old Czechoslovakian wolfdog living in Mendham, near Halesworth, has been trained to search for lost dogs, and his owner believes he is the first of his kind in the UK to do so.
The breed initially comes from crossing a wolf with a German shepherd, and over the years has been used by the military to track and search.
Loki’s owner, Sam Bryce, said: “What they got was a dog that had awesome noses for tracking.
“Within a few weeks he found an abandoned litter of kittens.
“We then did some things to see if he was interested in following a scent and he was.
“It’s all about trust. You have to trust him that we’re following what we want to be following.”
“He’s not had to take a lot of training. We had to teach him to put up with me!”
Ms Bryce added that although the dogs have become popular because of television programmes and films, they do have their moments.
She said: “They can be very destructive, and they don’t like being on their own.
“I got him when I knew I could give him the time and commitment.
“They are very loyal dogs, and you only have to show them something once and they know how to do it.”
The breed, which became popular in the late 1990s, was banned by Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA). Ms Bryce said this was because they wanted to investigate the breed. She added: “In 2006 they lifted the ban, but there’s that stigma attached to them.”
Despite his work in the field, away from his job Loki can be hard work.
Ms Bryce said: “They argue and they like to have the last word. They’re very demanding dogs.
“But he’s wonderful. He’s the most loyal dog I’ve ever had.”
The search Ms Bryce and Loki offer is free. For more information on the service call 07810 641818.