Md. Parents Use Dogs to Sniff Out Drugs at Home

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Dogs are often used for drug detection in schools and airports. But now parents in Maryland can use them to monitor their teens at home by looking for drugs.

Parents can hire a drug sniffing dog and its trainer from companies like the non-profit Dogs Finding Drugs.

The team will come in and search a teenager's room for illegal items. The service can cost up to $200 an hour.

Parents say it's an effective tool in keeping kids drug free. However, some teens argue it's an invasion of privacy.

"We do everything we can to try to eliminate drugs in the environment," said Anne Wills, owner of the company.

Dogs Finding Drugs will not confiscate anything, nor does the group notify police.

"It's an invasion of privacy. Teenagers need to feel they have their own space. They do have lives, but drugs are a serious problem," argued parent Laurie Wiggins.

Some companies are also hiring drug dogs to search their buildings.

Most of the canines are former police dogs. To be eligible to be hired, they must be able to sniff out drugs 19 out of 20 times.

Elizabeth Robertson of the National Institute on Drug Abuse says parents should talk to their children about potential drug problems rather than hiring a drug-sniffing dog.

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