Ruidoso Downs Race Track in New Mexico is teaming up with the Ruidoso and Ruidoso Downs Police Departments and the Lincoln County Sheriff's office to use K9 units at the track.
These three law enforcement agencies will use experienced K9 units to periodically inspect incoming trucks and trailers, as well as tack rooms and feed storage areas in the barn areas to detect illicit substances. This increased security effort will encompass the entire track property, including vehicles and tack rooms in the stable area.
“We're pleased to join forces with local and regional law enforcement to create a more safe and secure racing environment at Ruidoso Downs,” said Ruidoso Downs' president and general manager Jeff True.
The K9 units are on regular patrol with their respective agencies in the execution of their duties and have been trained for the detection of illegal human drugs. A newly acquired dog is currently being imprinted and trained in the detection of illegal equine substances that have been detected in post-race and out of-competition testing programs conducted by the state racing commissions in New Mexico, Texas, and Oklahoma. The new K9 unit will be deployed at Ruidoso this summer.
“Dogs can smell odors at levels of parts per trillion, say the scientists, and they can be trained to alert to any scents that they are trained to find. The investment in a dog that can detect illicit equine substances is a logical addition to our comprehensive effort to prevent the use of those substances in racing,” explained True.
All the canine units have been exposed to horses and barns. They have demonstrated no adverse reaction to those environments.
The Ruidoso Downs season opens on Friday with the first of two days of trials to the Grade 1, $1 million Ruidoso Futurity.
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