Look out, criminals!  Russia is training a different kind of police dog to take to the streets.  They have thick wooly coats, long adept ears, and sharp skillful noses.  You guess it, the Russian police force’s new canine support dog breed of choice is….  the Corgi?  The Russian state news reporter RIA Novosti recently release information about their latest canine unit expanding to that of the Corgi breed. They are currently just beginning to train a few Corgi puppies to see if the breed is responsive enough to work actively in the field.

With their small bodies, and cheerful, cuddly natures, it is tough to imagine these adorable pups chasing criminals or intimidating fearsome lawbreakers. But there are surprising reasons why the Pembroke Welsh Corgis and Cardigan Welsh Corgis are now being trained for active duty.  Here are some of the aspects of this breed that make them an appealing choice for the K9 units.

They are hardy. This dog breed hails from the rainy and wet United Kingdom. Working in wet pastures and hillsides for long hours in unpleasant weather makes these dogs a durable crew. They have dense, weather resistant coats that would work well in cold climate areas like Russia, and they are used to trekking miles over rocky, grassy, and woody terrain.

They are small.  Most police dogs are large like German Shepherds, which is incredibly useful in attacking enemies, but less helpful for retrieval and reconnaissance missions. The Corgi’s legs are short, allowing him to speed quickly along the ground, dive into small holes or burrows, and be able to retrieve things other dogs would not be able to.

These are tenacious workers. Corgis were originally bred as herding dogs, that run tirelessly at the command of their owner.  They are used to corralling sheep and cattle, keeping animals in line by nipping at their heels and barking warnings to get them in line. They are very attached to their owners, and when given proper training, are highly responsive to their handler.  This quality of quick obedience would be imperative if they were to join the police force.

They have strong scent abilities.  One of the most important tasks the K9 units are settled with, is that of sniffing out narcotics and other kinds of contraband. Corgis are alert dogs with a keen ability to detect different scents, which would be helpful when it comes to tracking illegal items.

They are easy to train. Because of their natural eager desire to please, and willingness to commit to a task, Corgis are exceptionally easy to train. If given consistency and firm commands, they can learn all manner of tricks and skills. Additionally, Corgi dogs can also be trained as therapy pets, service animals and have been able to support the hearing impaired.

Will the trial run work? Even if the Russian police opt to include another dog breed other than the Corgi, we can certainly see why these adept and agile dogs were a top contender for the program.