This Friday evening, he is therefore going to officiate for the first time in the field, in “Sambi” detection, of narcotics, weapons, ammunition and banknotes that he has been trained to spot. For the commander of the Pau Gendarmerie Company, Squadron Leader Rémi Armengaud, it is “an additional technicality” which will notably make it possible to strengthen operations in the fight against delinquency and more specifically against the possession of narcotics, the occasion of roadside checks. Operations which are carried out “several times a month” at the request of the Pau prosecution.
Drugs, weapons, tickets
Scorpio will also intervene in the context of investigations, during searches to detect the presence or traces of narcotics, weapons, ammunition or banknotes. A work carried out by three, with his master, Constable Grégory, and a volunteer deputy constable (GAV), within the canine team integrated within the Surveillance and Intervention Platoon of the Gendarmerie (PSIG) of Pau.
In Béarn, the group already has a “Sampi” dog at the Artix brigade and a tracker dog at the High Mountain Gendarmerie Platoon (PGHM) in Oloron. The canine team based in Pau is called upon to cover the entire region, but will obviously be more easily “mobilized” within the purview of the Pau company.
But never without his master. “It’s an exclusive relationship,” says the squadron leader. Constable Grégory, his deputy and Scorpio had 13 weeks of training at Gramat to establish this working relationship. After 10 years of mobile gendarmerie in Périgueux, gendarme Grégory, originally from Béarn, responded to a call for applications to become a dog master. Six soldiers were selected from around forty applications. What is it, a meeting…
The dog was “assigned” to its master from the start of this training. “I hope we will do at least six years together”. Scorpio is a little “older” than the average police dog. At the end of his military career, he will retire. Constable Grégory makes no secret that this retreat will take place at his home. “He will become a couch dog at my house”.
“It’s love but it’s a working dog”
It is a relationship that is difficult to describe between a dog and its master. “It’s love, but it’s a working dog,” summarizes Constable Grégory. They are a bit more than co-workers, even if “when I’m off, he’s off too”. There is a form of routine, daily outings, official missions, training to improve this or that point.
A brother-in-arms side too. “He is a policeman, he is exposed like everyone else. But I will never put him in danger, develops the dog master. Before launching a search, it is my role to secure the premises. During a roadside check, it is the third member of the team who watches over the safety of his two colleagues.
Scorpio, like many of his fellow Malinois, was selected for his qualities as a robust dog (“it’s intense as an activity even if we don’t do detection for three or four hours”), intelligent, and on his olfactory abilities .
“But for him, it’s game,” insists Constable Grégory. When he “marks” one of the products he has been trained to spot, Scorpio is rewarded with access to his favorite object, the “sausage”. Each dog has his own. Like his own personality. “He is a very affectionate animal, passed through the SPA box. For him, it’s like a reset”, observes his master. A new dog’s life.