Honey Grove high schoolers build device to train drug dogs

Published: May. 10, 2018 at 6:04 PM CDT
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Honey Grove police needed help building some equipment to train their drug dogs-- so they reached out to some high school students for a hand.

"It's been extremely important, whether it's for the community or the surrounding area."

Janeen Baggette is Honey Grove Police Department's newest K9 handler. She spent a week putting dogs to the test.

She said their was a problem: their old contraptions they used to reward dogs just weren't doing the trick.

"You want them to disassociate from the human that they're where the reward is coming from to make that dog is dedicated to the greatest source of odor," Baggette said.

So Honey Grove Police asked some high schoolers for a hand.

"He just came to us and was needing something to help train his dog," said and we just ran with it," said 11th grader Adam Aldridge.

Here's how their homemade system works. Handlers can hide the drugs in the back, and when the dogs sniff out the correct scent, they use remote controls to open a trap door and release a toy instead of having to come over their self and give the dog the reward.

"You'll hit it and the trap door, it opens, and a miracle, it falls from the sky," Baggette said.

"We started putting things together," said Honey Grove High School Agricultural Science teacher Zeb Tindel. "They used the skills in their automotive class; they learned wiring, things of that nature, and went to fabricating."

Tindel said his kids ordered parts online and in about four days they had built the machines. Similar models retail for about $6000.

"We did 'em for less than $200 a box," Tindel.

Students said they learned a lot and had fun helping the police department out.

"They do a lot for us so it feels good to give back to them. They're protecting us. I know if something happens here they would be here in a heart beat," Aldridge said.

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