Credit: Grand Ducal Police

The Grand Ducal Police has announced that the Malinois dog Maja is currently undergoing training as a detection dog for her mission in Ukraine with the assistance of the police dog unit, as part of the "EU Mine Detection Dog Project" (EU-MDDP).

Three female Malinois (Arina, Inez and Anelka) were successfully trained as part of the same project in 2023 and were subsequently handed over to their respective handlers in Ukraine. Maja is expected to complete her training by early summer this year.

Throughout their training, the dogs are instructed in the fundamental principles of dealing with explosives according to current EU standards, including displaying appropriate behaviour and recognising different types of explosives, over approximately six months. The training is conducted by a former member of the Luxembourg police dog squad, with the support of the dog squad, which provides the necessary infrastructure, materials and other training resources.

Following their training, the dogs are acquainted with their new Ukrainian military dog handler.

The objective of the EU training programme, involving Luxembourg, Malta, Austria, Finland and Belgium, is to prepare specially trained dogs for future deployment in the Ukrainian crisis area. There, they will aid in the detection and neutralisation of explosives (such as unexploded bombs, mines, etc.) used in hostilities across fields, vehicles, ruins, cities and rural areas.

As part of the project, a total of 50 new detection dogs are to be trained by the participating countries by 2025 for deployment in the reconstruction efforts in Ukraine.