21 Hard-Working Dogs With Full-Time Jobs

We all know that dogs are extremely sociable creatures. In fact, people often say that they are our best friends in the animal kingdom. As they grow up, dogs learn to respond to their names, they learn to follow certain orders, and compared to many other animals, they develop a very good memory. However, did you know that many dogs are trained in order to perform real jobs? In this list, we will introduce you to 20 industrious dogs that have very important jobs, proving how helpful they are for humankind. You’ll definitely have a laugh with #8, #4 and #1!

#21. Watchdogs

The most common job assigned to dogs is that of being a watchdog. In fact, many of you may have trained your own pets to do the same. The idea behind this is for the dog to protect the house and warn their owners in case someone tries to trespass the property.

Photo: Courtesy of Wireless Doorbells

However, some people also train their pets to be guard dogs. The main difference between watchdogs and guard dogs is that the latter not only bark at strangers but are also trained to attack if their owner tells them to. Breeds such as Doberman Pinschers, German Shepherds, Rottweilers, and American Pitbull Terriers are among the dog breeds more naturally fit for guard dogs.

#20. Airport Security

Another job that is frequently assigned to dogs is that of airport police; more specifically, they aid policemen in the process of airport security screening. In fact, I’m pretty sure that, at some point in your lives, all of you have seen a dog working for the police, either at an airport or in any other public space.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

Airport security dogs are trained to smell all kinds of people as well as their belongings. So if you happen to carry smelly unwashed clothes or a slice of blue cheese inside your luggage, these dogs will surely identify them in a matter of a second! However, the real reason why they have dogs performing this job is so that they can detect the illegal possession of drugs.

#19. Dan The Mascot

This may not be the prettiest dog on earth, but the fact that he goes by the name Handsome Dan makes him cuter. This bulldog is the mascot of Yale University, and his job is to attend sports games and other school events, being one of the institution’s most famous icons.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

But the role of Handsome Dan has been played by 17 different bulldogs since 1889. The gig is passed on from one bulldog to the next when a dog passes away or retires from his or her role. Believe it or not, this is the oldest live mascot tradition in the world. Some people are crazy, right?

#18. Police Dogs

Perhaps the most common workplace for dogs is the police. To be honest, this job is quite similar to the one that they perform in airports. In this case, many canines help police officers by searching for missing people, lost animals, weapons, or bodies. In this sense, sometimes dogs are able to sneak through places that are unreachable for humans, due to their obvious size difference.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

At times, police dogs are also trained to bring down people who run away from the police. And at other times, they’re simply in charge of making sure that their human partners are safe. As you can see, they’re quite multitasked creatures, don’t you think?

#17. Chicken Guard

I know what you’re thinking: what the hell is a chicken guard? Although I’ve made this name up, it pretty much reflects what this Golden Retriever must do. Just as the police hires dogs to aid them and to protect them, this dog spends each of his days protecting a flock of hens from any potential threats.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

In this sense, it is common for people to train dogs in order for them to protect their livestock, be it hens or any other creature. This is much more common in rural areas, for obvious reasons. So who wouldn’t want to be that chicken? She has nothing to worry about!

#16. The Rescue Puppies

This puppy is one of the cutest little creatures you’ll ever see. But apart from being adorable, it actually does a tremendously important service to humanity. When humans or animals go missing, especially after a disaster – such as tornadoes, earthquakes or floods – this rescue dog has the mission of finding them and rescuing them.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

Like we’ve said before, the dogs’ size allows them to sneak into places that may be inaccessible for humans. That is why dogs can be extremely helpful after an earthquake, for instance. But take a minute and observe the picture above: doesn’t that cute little dog look ready to do his job?

#15. Tech Dog

Training a dog to work in security seems reasonable. But can you imagine a dog working in the technological field? Well, believe it or not, this tiny black dog helps develop video games. Evidently, you don’t have to be a gaming engineer or a designer in order to work in the game tech business! But how can dogs be useful for this purpose?

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

The dog provides designers with realistic movements for digital dogs that appear in 2D or 3D videogames. Let’s just hope they manage to copy the dog’s expression in the picture above, because look how adorable and happy he seems!

#14. Army Dogs

We have already seen that many dogs serve jobs within the police forces or rescue teams. Some other dogs, however, work for the armed forces and are trained to perform more risky tasks. Out of all the jobs mentioned in this list, this is the most dangerous of all, without a doubt.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

Dogs working for the military are trained to smell bombs and landmines, the reason for which they can be extremely useful in those territories that are going through armed conflicts. They are also used for tracking down enemies, protecting wounded soldiers and dragging them to a safe place. Is there anything that they can’t do?

#13. Bazz The Beekeeper

It is widely known that dogs have a much more developed sense of smell than humans. In fact, dogs have 30 million olfactory receptors in their noses, compared to the six million that us humans have. And this sense of smell can come in handy when it comes to performing certain tasks, such as the one carried out by Bazz the Beekeeper.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

Bazz is an Australian Labrador who works in bee colonies and his job is to smell the bees in order to detect the ones that are sick and thus a threat to the rest of the hive. Not only did he undergo thorough training by the fellow beekeepers, but he is also made to wear a quite funny-looking costume, which protects him from head to toe in order to avoid any stings.

#12. Sled Dogs

Without a doubt, one of the oldest dog jobs in the world is being a sled dog. As a matter of fact, dogs have worked carrying sleds ever since the 10th century, while some say that this tradition has originated even before. This practice is still common in places like northern Canada, Siberia, Alaska, and Greenland.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

As you may imagine, making your way through deep piles of snow can be a real nuisance when traveling by car, bus, train, or basically any other means of transport. Thus, different dog breeds, though mainly Siberian Huskies, are trained to carry people or other objects on sleds.

#11. Construction Worker

Working on construction sites demands to take a great number of safety measures. Amongst these, every builder must wear a helmet, just in case something falls on top of their heads. But humans aren’t the only ones that need to protect their heads!

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

This cute little dog is in charge of inspecting holes on construction sites, and just like any of his human pals, he makes sure he has his helmet tightly fastened every time his shift begins. He seems to enjoy his job quite a lot, doesn’t he?

#10. Uggie The Hollywood Star

I bet all of you are asking yourselves: “Where do I know this dog from?”. Well, this tiny little Jack Russel Terrier named Uggie was rejected by his first two owners, but after that, he was rescued and ended up becoming a Hollywood star. He is famous for playing a role in the film Water for Elephants as well as in an episode of Key & Peele.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

However, he is most known for his role in The Artistthe film that won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 2011. His performance was so brilliant, that some people launched the campaign “Consider Uggie”, for Uggie to receive an Honorary Academy Award Nomination. And believe it or not, in October 2012 he had his own autobiography published, named Uggie, My Story.

#9. Rescuer In The Mountains

Saint Bernards are among the world’s most giant dog breeds, and they adapt easily to extremely cold temperatures. In fact, if you ever visit the Andes in South America or the Alps in Europe,  you will often find postcards of Saint Bernards surrounded by snow-topped mountains and carrying a barrel around their necks. But have you ever wondered what their job is?

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

In ancient times, the monks who lived in the Alps trained Saint Bernards to rescue people in the mountains. Apparently, they carried a barrel filled with brandy around their necks in order to keep people warm. Nowadays they’re not usually trained to be rescuers any longer. In fact, they still carry the barrel of brandy as more of a tradition.

#8. Plane Security

As we have seen, it’s common for dogs to be trained by the police forces in order to detect drugs or other forbidden substances inside pieces of luggage. However, this is not the only thing that dogs are useful for in airports. Take a look at the picture below: can you guess what that dog’s job is?

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

The dog in the picture is named Piper, a border collie from Traverse City, Michigan, USA. His job is to chase birds, foxes, groundhogs, or any other animal off the runway of the city’s airport. Just like those humans who work in the landing tracks, Piper wears protective goggles as well as noise-canceling headphones. So if you ever pay a visit to Traverse City, worry no more, because this dog will be keeping planes safe.

#7. Courtney the Salesdog

This list contains many bizarre dog jobs, but this one is just too much. In of USA’s many Walmart supermarkets, people have decided to hire a slightly overweight corgi as part of the sales staff. So when you go to the checkout to pay for your weekly groceries, this doggie named Courtney will be there.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

So if I were you, I’d keep an eye on Courtney while she bags you up, especially if you’re buying any dog food! Because dogs are known for being sneaky, who knows what she can snatch from your bags the minute you look another way!

#6. Lifeguards

Dogs may not be as swift swimmers as other mammals, such as whales, dolphins or manatees. However, most of them definitely enjoy playing and submerging themselves in the water! In fact, did you know that if they receive proper training, many dog breeds can become quite good swimmers?

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

So for those of you that aren’t too skilled when it comes to water, these doggos will come to the rescue in case you start drowning. So scream for help, and these little canine lifeguards will go after you. Look at the picture above: they seem to be waiting for someone to call for help!

#5. Canine Therapists

Most of the jobs mentioned until now have one thing in common: they are all very physically demanding. Luckily, some dogs have a much more relaxing task: serving as a therapy animal. Many scientific investigations have proven that pooches can help relieve stress and even treat cases of anxiety or depression.

Photo: Courtesy of Honest to Paws

In fact, in many American colleges, students are allowed to take their dogs to school during exam week, since it has been proven that doing so can have positive effects on students’ mental health. So here’s something that everyone should propose to their school principal!

#4. Supermodel Dogs

Believe it or not, being a supermodel is not just for humans. It’s also a big deal in the dog world! Each year, thousands of dogs compete in local and nationwide dog shows and beauty pageants all over the world. But not only that: some dogs are actually trained in order to do so!

 

Photo: Courtesy of Medium

One of the world’s most ancient and important dog events is Crufts, held in the British city of Birmingham. This dog show was created in 1891 by the dog-food salesman Charles Cruft, and each year, over 20,000 pooches of all shapes and sizes assemble in order to win a prize on the event’s beauty pageant. Who would’ve known?

#3. Seeing Eye Dogs

It is a known fact that dogs are always loyal to their owners and they serve them in every way that they can. But sometimes, the things they do for their owners is just heroic. Guide dogs are a type of assistance animals, which are animals trained to help people with different disabilities to lead more fulfilling lives.

Photo: Courtesy of From Goats to Soaps

The most common example of an assistance dog is those that assist blind people. These are sometimes called seeing eye dogs, and their job is to guide blind people inside their houses or in the streets, in case they need to go somewhere and can’t do it with human assistance. However, assistance dogs are also used to warn the deaf, aid the disabled, and even to calm down people with psychological disorders such as OCD.

#2. Scat Detector

We’ve seen many bizarre jobs until now, but this one takes things to another level. This dog is named Tucker, and he is part of a scientific team at the Center for Conservation Biology of the University of Washington. You’ll never guess what his role in the team is.

Photo: Courtesy of The Journal of the San Juan Islands

His job is to sniff out orca poop. The thing is, the research team collects samples of orca feces, which are usually floating the Salish Sea, in order to study the animals. According to the research team, Tucker can smell the feces from a mile away, so they always take him with them on the boat. It turns out that he’s very good at his job since he has helped find a majority of the 348 fecal samples analyzed.

#1. Goofy The Mayor

Ladies and gentlemen, you’re about to read one of the most bizarre things that have ever happened in history. Believe it or not, there is a small hamlet in the state of Kentucky that is famous for electing dogs as mayors. The town we’re talking about is Rabbit Hash, which according to the last census has a population of 315. Even the town’s name sounds like a joke!

Photo: Courtesy of Reddit

The first elected mayor in the hamlet’s history was a dog named Goofy Borneman-Calhoun. He won in an election held in 1998, and unfortunately, he died in office three years later, at the age of 16. On an election held on August 31, 2008, the border collie Lucy Lou became the hamlet’s first female mayor. Lucy is the dog shown in the picture above: isn’t she the cutest mayor in US history?

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  • About Author

    Hernán Tamargo

    Teacher. Political Scientist. Writer. Feminist... and much more!

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