PEOPLE who are struggling after getting a puppy during lockdown are being asked to consider giving their pets to the police to become canine “officers”.

Durham Police is looking for new canine recruits for its dog support unit.

The force says it is particularly interested in recruiting for working dog breeds, such as Labradors or Spaniels.

They are looking for dogs aged from 12 months to a maximum of two years old.

New training courses will be starting later this year.

A spokeswoman for Durham Police said: “Bought a puppy during lockdown and thinking you might have bitten off more than you can chew? We might be able to help.”

She added: “If you’ve found yourself in the position of no longer being able to care for your pup, it could be the perfect opportunity for it to become a new police recruit.

“If your dog likes to play, then they could be an ideal candidate for the next course starting later this year.”

Police dogs are used in all sorts of situations – from sniffing out drugs and weapons to helping with searches for vulnerable missing people or criminals on the run.

They undergo extensive training to make sure they are up to the job.

Durham’s police dogs also have their own social media channels to show off their work to the public.

Anyone who would like to put their dog forward is asked to get in touch with Durham Police to find out more.

Email Ann Younghusband at for more detail of what would be entailed.