PC Allison - Puppy: Bruce
I handle Bruce. It is thought that he was the alpha one male of the litter. Bruce lived inside our home address but has recently been staying outside in the covered kennel and run during the day - weather permitting.
Bruce is doing well and showing his mischievous side by barking at people when he is being carried in my car. He currently likes to use the boot as a toilet - no matter how long he is walked beforehand!
Bruce is transfixed with a water bucket inside the dogs run. I have had to refill the bucket several times - my fellow police dog Fluke being drenched in water.
The bucket situation got so bad I had to screw hooks to the run to lock it against the wall. Bruce didn't like this and for half an hour barked and pulled at it, again with water flying all over.
However, the bucket remained in place. During the half an hour bucket fight, he had both paws in the bucket and his head under the water for several seconds. Eventually the bucket won!
Otherwise to date Bruce is full of confidence and is showing great promise - buckets permitting!
Northumbria Police train there Police dogs with three basic principles in mind namely, repetition, association and reward. The training must be happy and enjoyable for the dog. Some of this training is carried out in officers own time, this ensuring the dog development and progression.
Recently, Bruce my wife and daughter and myself visited the Newcastle Sunday Quayside market. The intention was for Bruce to associate with large crowds and new surroundings, this was the first time Bruce had experienced large crowds.
We travelled to the market in my car, for once Bruce did not use the car as a toilet so we were off to a good start. Bruce jumped out of the car full of confidence immediately pulling on his lead.
Upon approaching the market Bruce picked up a dirt old drinking can. Bruce trotted along looking proud with this can in his mouth. Near to a dust bin I removed the can form Bruce's mouth putting this can in the bin.
Bruce clearly thought this was a great game and soon picked up can after can after can. I came, to the conclusion that if Bruce does not make the grade of a Police dog he could become a refuse collector.
Bruce clearly loved the crowds at the market, with numerous pats and admiring glances he trotted along the market, two persons asked if he was the dog from Northumbria Police's website.
He did remarkably well, he walked over the Millennium bridge without fear, we took a photograph of his proud achievement.
Bruce slept on the way home having collected several dropped cans, Bruce doing his bit for the community, a great day out.
Since the last update, in June this year, Bruce has moved house and is settling in well in his new home with his new Mum.
Thanks to a great start with Sgt Little and his other two dogs, Bruce is coming on leaps and bounds and although it was a shock at first, he's loving having a whole kennel to himself!
Bruce is now 10 months old and weighs a MASSIVE 42kgs (over 6 1/2 stones in old money). That said, looking at his huge paws and ears, he unbelievably still has some growing left to do. Other people cannot believe that he is so young and his Mum waits with great anticipation to see how big he ends up!
At the moment, Bruce's favourite game is finding pretend criminals who have run off and are then hiding within buildings. He loves to shout at them when he finds them as his bark is big, deep and intimidating enough to frighten even the hardest of criminals!
As several of Bruce's brothers and sisters are handled by officers on the same shift pattern, he gets to see them regularly and loves socialising and wrestling with them when they've finished their exercises on training days.
Away from work, Bruce loves long walks in the countryside where he gets to chase butterflies and carry the biggest sticks he can find. He loves trips to the beach to dig holes in the sand and when he gets home he loves to chew his kennel, AND his Mum's mountain bike... there's just something about the foam seat and the plastic coated brake cables that he cannot resist!