Police dog's bite fails to live up to its bark

Police argue that breeders have made German shepherds less bold

source: Angelique Chrisafis
Guardian February 3 2001 p8

West Yorkshire police spokesman, Phil Tyson, has told 'Police Review' that dog shows have meant that German shepherds have become less bold and so less suitable for police work. Shows tend to seek nice, subdued dogs, he argues, rather than aggression. The head of the dog training school for West Yorkshire is Graham Armitage, who states that other breeds considered include Rhodesian ridgebacks, rottweilers, and dobermans, though it has been decided not to use Japanese akitas. Police officers have travelled to Belgium to purchase malinois dogs, a type of Belgian shepherd dog that is smaller than a German shepherd. The Kennel Club breeders' association's Phil Buckley argues that breeders' guidelines for German shepherds are that the breed should be courageous and not nervous.