In May 2021, the GSA Personal Property Management, Center of Expertise for Animals in the Mid-Atlantic Zone helped over 100 dogs find work in the public sector.
Area Property Officer Robert Kitsock transferred the beagles and labradors — including Gatsby (right) and Mox (below) — from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Detector Dog Training Center in Newman, Georgia, to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection office in Atlanta. Each of these canines are proud recent graduates of the training center.
The National Detector Dog Training Center is a USDA facility dedicated to providing training for agriculture detector dog teams tasked with safeguarding American agriculture and natural resources. The Center primarily trains dogs to detect fruits, vegetables, and meats in international passenger baggage, mailed packages, and vehicles entering the United States.
After graduating from training, these proficient canines and their handlers inspect passenger baggage, cargo, and parcels to detect prohibited agricultural items.
The Center of Expertise for Animals was established by the national Personal Property Management program to work with federal agencies to ensure the safe, effective and efficient placement of federal animals.
The new graduates will perform security and safety assignments in support of Department of Homeland Security personnel at the Port of Atlanta and around the United States.