Ten Unique Jobs for Working Dogs - Pet Hub USA

Ten Unique Jobs for Working Dogs

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While dogs make phenomenal pets, many breeds exist due to jobs they had in pre-industrial civilization. Some dogs still have unique jobs that their biological gifts make them singularly suited for. Here are ten interesting jobs some dogs still have today!

Protecting Fine Art

Brown Short Coat Dog on Green Grass Field
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels

The Boston Museum of Fine Arts has a vast collection of priceless pieces of human history. Protecting objects like books and fabric from pests is a time-consuming and costly endeavor. To cut down on this expense, the museum has a trusted professional who sniffs out bugs and signals when she detects them: Riley, a Weimaraner who can smell insects within the objects she guards.

Pulling Carts

Work dog pulling a cart
WORK DOGS PULLING CART c.1920 QUEBEC raised Canadian Rural use of Dogs and Dog Teams to pull supply and freight carts A DOG TEAM being a MAN & HIS DOG in CANADA 12” by UpNorth Memories – Don Harrison is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

During the First World War, some dogs were trained to pull carts loaded with munitions, ammo, and even wounded soldiers to and from the front lines. In the modern era, dog carting is a popular sport among enthusiasts. Some breeds, like the Bernese Mountain Dog and Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, are especially well-suited to this endurance-testing contest.

Sniffing Out Illness

man in blue shirt hugging black and white short coated dog
Photo by Cynthia Smith on Unsplash

Dogs’ sense of smell is legendary, and it might be even better than you realize. Dogs can sniff out chemicals emitted by cancer cells and can alert medical professionals to the presence of diseases before even the most advanced modern technology.

Finding Truffles

brown long coated dog on green grass field during daytime
Photo by Beth Macdonald on Unsplash

While truffle hunting is typically carried out by hogs, dogs are equally adept at finding these valuable fungi. Dogs can be trained to sniff out truffles using their unparalleled sense of smell. And, unlike hogs, breeds like the Lagotto Romagnolo are trained not to eat the truffles they sniff out!

Fire Fighter

dalmatian puppy
Photo by Alora Griffiths on Unsplash

The image of a team of firefighters battling a blaze attended by a Dalmatian is iconic for a reason. Dalmatians and other cart-pulling breeds were commonly used before cars to help carry water to put out burning buildings. These days, Dalmatians’ main job around firehouses is to be a faithful companion to the hard-working first responders.

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Detecting Electronics

man sitting on rolling chair holding dog
Photo by devn on Unsplash

You’ve likely seen service dogs who are trained to sniff out explosives and other hazardous objects. In a similar vein, some law enforcement agencies use dogs to find electronics. Trained hounds can identify computers, flash drives, and even objects as small as microchips!

Comforting Victims

A Boy Cuddling with His Dog
Photo by Katya Wolf on Pexels

Experts have found that some people can be comforted by dogs in times of crisis. Many first responder teams include service dogs who are specifically employed to calm victims of tragedies. These dogs are more than just fuzzy friends, too. They’re specifically trained in ways to calm people down and help them focus.

Sled Team

husky, sled dogs, adamczak
Photo by badamczak80 on Pixabay

Siberian huskies and other cold-weather breeds were initially employed as sled teams. It’s very difficult to travel over the Siberian tundra and similar snowy areas. With help from hardy, cold-loving canines, though, a skilled sled driver can cross many miles in a single day.

Read More: Tips for Leash Training Your New Pup

Inspecting Wine

Close-Up Photography of Wine Glasses
Photo by Valeria Boltneva on Pexels

Wine is a delicate drink. The smallest imperfections in its chemical composition can render it foul-tasting and even unpalatable. That’s why some vintners rely on dogs trained to pick up the smell of molecules like 2,4,6-trichloroanisole (TCA), which can impart a foul musty flavor to otherwise clean wine.

Read More: 10 Ways to Improve Your Dog’s Destructive Behavior

Controlling Wildlife

Dog Howling Grazing Sheep on Pasture
Photo by Edwin Jambo Micha on Pexels

Dogs have worked as shepherds for longer than some civilizations have existed. That’s why it’s no surprise that they can still work as wildlife controllers. An airport in Traverse City, Michigan employed a Border Collie named Piper who kept wildlife off the runways. Rodents and the raptors who hunt them were his main concern, and he did a stellar job keeping them away from the planes.

Read More: 10 Part-Time Jobs for Retired Dog Lovers

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