Auburn University signs $24 million contract for canine research

AUBURN, Ala. (WTVM) – Auburn University leaders recently signed one of the largest research contracts in the school’s history.

The University was selected by the United States Department of Homeland Security to help develop counter-terrorism methods.

This contract is worth $24 million.

The funding will help advance Auburn’s research into how best to use dogs to find explosives and criminals.

With the growing number of national, state, and even local security threats over the years, detection dogs have demonstrated just how important they are to public safety.

Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies Dr. Frank Bartol says dogs and humans have been partners for thousands of years, but dogs see the world differently than we do because their sense of smell is highly evolved.

“The reasons dogs are an instrument for detecting and detecting potential threat agents is that they have evolved over the eons for that particular purpose and because they are partners and companions we have an ability it’s natural to work together to put us in common to detect things, explains Bartol.

The Dean of the Auburn College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Calvin Johnson, says these dogs are bred and trained in Auburn at a young age in several categories.

“It goes not only from canine detection, but also the ability to detect explosives, chemicals, biological agents, but also our ability to keep dogs healthy and to be able to train dogs and improve the genetics of the dogs that were creating. says Johnson.

Auburn University vice president of research, Dr. Jim Weyhenmeyer, says Auburn University is unique in being able to do this type of research.

“We are in the public health space, we are obviously in the animal health space, and we are also in the environmental health space. We have this confluence if you will of areas that come together in a way that I think makes Auburn a unique place to do this kind of analysis this kind of study. adds Weyhenmeyer.

The overall objective of the five-year contract is to develop the best methods for finding, training and deploying detector dogs across the country.

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