By John McDevitt


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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A five-day summer camp in which kids get to participate in the training of detection dogs is under way in Philadelphia.

Fourteen students from various middle schools are enrolled in the “canine handler academy” run by the Penn Vet Working Dog Center.

Among them is 14-year-old Simon Blanchard, of Coatesville, Pa. (second from right in photo, shielding his face from the sun).

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“Probably some of my favorite things were watching demonstrations of the search-and-rescue dogs in the rubble pile,” he said today.  “They have tubes that people can hide in, and then the dog has to find them.  And they sit in front of the tubes and bark when they find which of the tubes the person is in.”

It’s hoped the pups used in these excercises will one day be placed as working dogs.  Since the center opened about two years ago, three of the K9 grads are now members of the Septa and University of Pennsylvania police forces.

Camp tuition for each of the kids is $650.


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