Mearns Probus Club

The first meeting of the Club for April, 2013 was held in the Crown Inn, Laurencekirk with President Lawrie Smith as Chairman.

Because of the absence of the Secretary member Ian Bell deputised on his behalf.

The speaker was introduced by the President and he was P.C. Steve Warden from Grampian Police who is a dog handler.

He gave a short resume of how he joined the Police after studying at College for a degree in Agriculture, and also working in Australia.

After initial training he was to become a recognised dog handler and now has two dogs in his control. A German Shepherd for crowd control and to assist in arrests, and a Spaniel trained to find drugs.

The Spaniel was a stray a few months old, when found near the Lecht road by a gamekeeper.

After training with P.C. Warden, it became licenced and has been successful in recovering drugs in various places.

A demonstration was arranged and the dog showed how it changed in character once the harness had been fitted. It was now in working mode, and soon discovered the pre-hidden drugs brought in by its handler.

Steve also informed members of continuing training, kennel arrangements, veterinary treatment, food and travelling facilities for his dogs.

As dogs are always on duty, they along with their handlers can be called out at any time so keeping their dogs at their homes is essential.

An inspection of P.C. Warden’s uniform and kit required showed the many items now carried by a dog handler from CCTV Cameras to Mobile Phones, Batons, Handcuffs as well as other ancillary equipment including additional gear for body and head protection.

Member Ian Bell proposed a vote of thanks on behalf of the club for a very interesting and entertaining morning’s presentation.

The next meeting will be on Monday April 15, when Ian Williamson will be the speaker. It will be in the Crown Inn at 10 am.