After 10 years, these CBSA sniffer dogs are moving into retirement
Chloe and Jagger served at Pearson airport for about 10 years, looking for illegal food and currency
Two veterans of the Canada Border Services Agency — and possibly two of its friendliest employees — won't be sniffing around Pearson airport any longer.
After 10 years on the job, detector dogs Jagger and Chloe have just headed home to retire with their longtime handlers.
Jagger still looks as spry as a pup, with no telltale white hairs marking the lab's glossy black coat. His nose snaps back and forth over a suitcase with the same intensity as someone watching a tennis match. And he still jumps up effortlessly to sniff the purses dangling just out of his his reach.
"He looks for currency," Officer Falzon said of his faithful partner in a video released by CBSA. "Jagger's trained to go right up to people and sniff their pockets and around their waist. For the public, when they see the dog running around, it's an experience."
(The CBSA would not release the first names of either Falzon or Chloe's handler, Officer Portiss, citing security concerns.)
Although he's in a no-nonsense job, Jagger smiles at his handler after his searches, his tongue playfully lolling to the side.
But he can be all business, too. He's helped the border services agency seize more than $2.4 million, including 27 cases suspected to be connected to organized crime, the CBSA said in a release.
Chloe, meanwhile, focuses on sniffing out prohibited food or animal and plant products that travellers have stowed away in their bags.
Seizure with a smile
The 11-year-old beagle works with Office Portiss and has helped the agency seize more than 45,000 kilograms of restricted goods, according to a release.
Her wagging tail is as steady as a metronome set at top speed. And her nose never lets her down, her handler says in a video from the CBSA.
"My proudest moments are when she finds something that no one else would have ever found," Portiss said. "She'll be hard on a bag ... and indicate on it and we'll be searching it and the other officers will be saying, 'There's nothing here.'"
But, of course, there is: in this recollection, it's a packet of seeds stowed away in the toe of a shoe.
Comfy couches and sunny days
Chloe and Jagger won't have quite the same excitement in their golden years.
"She's cased out the best sunspots in the house and the comfiest couch," Portiss said.
But there are plenty more hikes and outdoor adventures in Chloe's future, her handler said.
"We'll keep the sniffer busy."