Meet 11-year-old Eebbers: TSA’s ‘cutest canine’
(Gray News) - The Transportation Security Administration says the final votes are in for this year’s cutest canine contest.
Eebbers, an 11-year-old explosive detection canine who works at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, was voted the winner of TSA’s 2022 Cutest Canine Contest.
Last week, the TSA held a nationwide social media contest for the public to vote for the agency’s “cutest canine.” Once all the votes were tallied, Eebbers emerged as the winner.
The agency said the contest was held in recognition of National Dog Day to acknowledge the important role TSA’s hardworking canines play in protecting the nation’s transportation system.
Eebbers, a Vizsla-Labrador mix, is a passenger screening canine who works at MSP alongside his handler as they screen travelers and their belongings for explosives at a security checkpoint.
According to the TSA, Eebbers has worked at the airport for almost 10 years. He was born into TSA’s puppy program and was named in memory of 19-year-old U.S. Army Pvt. James Ebbers who died in 2002.
Eebbers is the last remaining canine from the puppy program still working daily for TSA and has assisted with security on several major events, including the Super Bowl and the Indianapolis 500.
The TSA said it utilizes canines like Eebbers in its security operations nationwide. They are trained to detect the scent of explosives or explosive materials. The dogs are paired with handlers who utilize the working canine’s keen sense of smell when on duty throughout busy transportation environments.
Currently, the TSA has more than 1,000 canine teams that were trained at the TSA Canine Training Center in Texas.
Later this year, the agency said it will announce the availability of its 2023 canine calendar, featuring the top 12 runners-up in the 2022 contest. Eebbers will be the canine featured on the cover.
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