Local bomb-sniffing dogs dispatched after Boston attack - Boston News, Weather, Sports | FOX 25 | MyFoxBoston

Local bomb-sniffing dogs dispatched after Boston attack

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SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (myFOXDetroit.com) -

The moment news broke of the Boston Marathon attack, officials in metro Detroit jumped into action. They reviewed protocol with agencies like Homeland Security, along with law enforcement and their dogs - often the first line of defense.

"We can't forget how serious this is because as we saw yesterday it can happen at anytime and any moment - and for whatever reason, we dont know," reminds Terry Foley.

Foley's k9 Academy training facility is one of the top explosive detection canine training agencies in the country. Dogs train using real life scenarios that recreate horrific events from a dogs-eye view. His canine graduates have gone on to serve at the Superbowl, All- Star games, and even Iraqi elections.

It takes three months for dogs to become certified, but not all of the dogs make the cut.

Explosive detecting dogs use a passive alert system to detect the scent of hazardous materials. Then they're trained to calmly sit down next to the container, careful not to knock it over and cause an explosion.

The canine academy is one of the few in the county that only teaches English commands. That way the dogs learn to respond only to the handler's voice rather than a bad guy who could easily learn a foreign command.

After the bombs went off in Boston, half of Foley's canine team was dispatched to metro Detroit hospitals. Foley has 20 hospital teams, which help out with low law enforcement numbers.

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