A few weeks into CIA training, labrador Lulu began to show signs she simply “wasn’t interested in detecting explosive odours”.
Some people just aren’t cut out for the realities of a high-pressure work environment – and it would seem the same goes for dogs.
Lulu the labrador’s handler had high hopes of her becoming the CIA’s latest bomb-sniffing talent, but it was not meant to be.
It started out well, according to a “pupdate” on the CIA’s website, but soon started to go downhill.
A few weeks into training, Lulu began to show signs that she simply “wasn’t interested in detecting explosive odours”, the blog post said.
“Lulu was no longer interested in searching for explosives,” the post said.
“Even when they could motivate her with food and play to search, she was clearly not enjoying herself any longer.”
The post went on to say that the mental and physical wellbeing of the sniffer dogs is the CIA’s priority, so they “made the extremely difficult decision to do what’s best for Lulu and drop her from the programme”.
But it is not all bad news, as handlers have the option to adopt dogs who are dropped.
Lulu now has a new home, and spends her days chasing rabbits and squirrels in the garden – much less stressful.
It is not clear whether Lulu simply wasn’t up to the challenge of sniffing out bombs, or whether it was all part of a cunning plan to never have to go to work.
Either way, she’s happy, and so is her handler – and the CIA can now focus on its top dogs.