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Photo Gallery: Training keeps K-9s on point

A police dog, also known as a K-9, is a dog specifically trained to assist law-enforcement officers. Most come from generations of dogs specifically bred to perform specific tasks required for police work.

Even though North Carolina is not one of the 13 states with regulations for minimum K-9 standards, local officers do train and meet specific national certification standards.

The exact number of active police dogs in the United States is unknown, but in 2010, the North American Police Work Dog Association estimated the number at around 50,000. Agency dogs are deployed to do everything from bomb- and drug-sniffing to chasing down suspected criminals and searching for lost children. A fully trained dog costs about $15,000.

Philip S. Ruckle Jr. photos

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