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Bloodhounds from across the country training in Hamilton County

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Posted at 4:15 PM, Sep 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-29 11:27:00-04

HAMILTON, CO. — Bloodhounds are some of the best people trackers and finders in the world, thanks to their keen sense of smell and a group of them is gathered in Hamilton County this week for specialized training.

The Hamilton County Sheriff's Office has set up various training exercises to train their K-9's and others from across the Country.

They were out at Forrest Park in Noblesville on Tuesday.

Officer Neal Hoard demonstrated a training exercise for WRTV with Maudie.

Maudie joined the department when she was just 10-months old. She will be 5 next week.

The goal is to improve the hounds abilities to find people who are missing, by putting them through life scenarios.

"We will practice a bit of scent discrimination," Neal said. "Lost people deserve an opportunity to come home, The victims deserve an opportunity to have justice. So we're always trying to acclimate out dogs to new situations."

During the training exercise Maudie is given a scent from something belonging to someone posing as a missing person.

These dogs are trained to find people, good and bad.

"I don't know what my next case is going to be. I could be in Tipton County looking for a 4-year-old that can't find his way out of a cornfield. I could be all geared up and loooking for somebody who just got involved in a domestic battery and took off because the cops are coming."

Maudie isn't the only dog training this week. There are a handful from all over the country.

Diamond made her way with her handler from Boston.

"It's great to have that scenario under out belt incase we do encounter it again," said Franki Henriques.

Henriques is with 'Search Dogs Northeast,' a nonprofit group based out of Massachusetts.

She is in Indiana on her own dime, a price she says is worth it.

"This type of training with officers is hands down priceless," she said.

Not only is this training priceless, it is always rewarding.

"It doesn't matter if you are a patrol dog handler, or a bloodhound handler. You look in your backseat and your partner is there," Neal said. "It makes it a little bit easier to go through your day."

One of the best parts Neal said is when the dog completes the task successfully. "When they find something it is Christmas for them, but it is Christmas for me too," he said.