Friendly Dog Expelled from Police Dog Academy

Category: Human Interest


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. affinity / əˈfɪn ɪ ti / (n) – a desire or capability toward something

    The engineer’s son has an affinity for mathematics.

  2. canine / ˈkeɪ naɪn / (n) – animals from the dog family

    We saw a huge canine patrol outside a military camp.

  3. expulsion / ɪkˈspʌl ʃən / (n) – the act of removing something by force

    Hurting other students can lead to expulsion from the school.

  4. appoint / əˈpɔɪnt / (v) – to give someone a specific job or duty

    The mayor appointed her as the official city treasurer.

  5. extensive / ɪkˈstɛn sɪv / (adj) – describes something that covers a great measure

    The lazy students did not read the extensive article on bullying.


Read the text below.

A German shepherd has been expelled from a police academy in Queensland, Australia for being too friendly.

Gavel [GAVuh l] first joined the police dog academy of Queensland in April 2016 as a 10-week-old puppy. However, he was recently disqualified from the 16-month police dog training program.

Despite coming from a bloodline with a high affinity for police work, his handlers claimed that Gavel did not possess the necessary characteristics for crime-fighting. Police dogs are trained to be mildly aggressive and cautious toward strangers. On the other hand, Gavel is too sociable according to his trainers.

Unlike other canines that live with police officers, Gavel had been staying at the Government House of Queensland since he was a puppy. Governor Paul de Jersey fostered him during the training program.

After Gavel’s expulsion from the force, the governor immediately gave the dog an official position at the Government House. Gavel was appointed Vice-Regal Dog and his duties range from greeting visitors, welcoming tour groups, and attending ceremonies and other events.

Though Gavel did not pass his police dog training, his trainers said he showed great potential when they first selected him. Dogs are carefully assessed before they undergo extensive training. In Europe, they are specifically bred using strict standards and even undergo an international certification before they can enter the police force.

According to experts, not all dogs are made to be police dogs. Some dogs like Gavel possess the basic characteristics needed for the job, but will not qualify for it. As a Vice-Regal Dog, however, Gavel’s friendly personality is a plus.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• What qualities should a trained police dog possess? Explain.
• Do you think other animals can also be trained to assist policemen? Give an example and explain.

Discussion B

• Would you agree that police dogs are important in keeping public safety? Discuss your opinion.
• What are some potential problems of using police dogs?