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A group of House Homeland Security Committee members have introduced H.R. 659: the "Canine Detection Improvement Act of 2007."

This legislation addresses the need for improved and coordinated training, encourages the use of domestic dogs and confronts the need for more dogs by establishing a "Domestic Canine Breeding Grant Program" to increase canine numbers through both public and private means....
Chairman Thompson issued the following statement regarding the bill:
"Canine Detection Teams are critical to keeping America safe. This legislation is an important first step to ensuring that the supply of trained dogs will meet the nation's demand," said Chairman Thompson.
"This bipartisan, common sense legislation should help increase the use of domestically-bred dogs and support the work of canine breeding programs. Currently, the vast majority of these dogs are purchased in Europe, but by increasing domestic breeding we lower the costs of acquiring these dogs and ensure there are a sufficient number available for U.S. detection team training," Rep. Mike Rogers added.

I know this is a worthy issue and I'm glad someone's working to ensure a reliable supply of bomb-sniffing dogs. I still can't help envisioning Dr. Strangelove shouting from his chair, "Mr. President, what we are confronting here is a domestically-bred trained dog gap!" Indeed, perhaps it's time to create the world's biggest kennel and call it the Strategic Canine Reserve.

--Michael Crowley

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