K9 Croatia: Meet Maya, Proud Service Dog of Požega Slavonia Department

Katarina Anđelković

Updated on:

PU Požeško Slavonska
PU Požeško Slavonska

As 24Sata writes, Maya, the search dog, is on a special diet, eating once a day, as determined by the Ministry of Interior, and has certain limits and a schedule that her handler, police officer Barbara Čutura, must adhere to.

From May to December 2022, the Centre for Training of Service Dogs in Zagreb held a course for handlers of service dogs, training them in following a human trail and tracking.


Maya and Barbara

Her handler, police officer Barbara Čutura, a longtime employee of the Police Intervention Unit, stated that she is delighted with her dog’s abilities and added that she is brave, strong, fast and has all the necessary qualities of service dogs.

During the seven-month course, training was carried out on following a human trail, obedience, and a quality relationship between the handler and the dog, after which the dog received a license, which is renewed every year in accordance with the prescribed procedure.

Maya is a working dog, not a pet, and her life is very different from the lives of pets. Belgian shepherds are known for their need to be active. In the morning, when she wakes up, she must go for a walk of a couple of kilometres. After that, she rests a bit and goes to work, where she goes for a walk and a light run, followed by rest, tracking practice and obedience exercises.

Since Maya is a working police dog, she lives on a slightly different ‘regime,’ and passers-by are not allowed to pet her; she is on a special diet, eating once a day, as determined by the Ministry of Interior. She has certain limits and a schedule that her handler must follow.

The Ministry accepts dogs aged 12 to 36 months because this is the time when they need to start more serious training. So the criteria they must meet are pretty high. The tests include a health examination and tests of working abilities, which check the dog’s socialisation, stability on a shot, stability on surfaces, its instincts, etc. Maya passed all of those.

After completing a task, a reward follows. And what might that be? Kong, a special toy for dogs. According to her handler, police officer Barbara Čutura, she is over the moon every time she gets it.

“After all, we believe that the acquired knowledge and ability of this special team will contribute to the better and more successful work of our Police Department,” announced the Požega Slavonsia Police Department.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Lifestyle section.


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