Yo Dude, Never Mind, Just Weed, It's Cool: In Newly Legal States, Cops Have to Retrain Drug-Sniffing Dogs

by
Abby Zimet

With Washington state, Colorado and likely other places before long passing laws decriminalizing small amounts of weed, police face the bizarre challenge of "untraining" pot-sniffing K-9 units to focus on "truly illegal substances" like heroin, cocaine and meth - cases, they say, where “narcotics-trained canine’s alert will still be relevant to the probable cause equation.” In an intriguing old-dog-new-trick footnote that's led some forces to just train new dogs, police say it's much easier to teach dogs to respond to pot than to teach them to ignore it after they've gotten used to it.

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