ATF Explosives-Sniffing Dog 'Charlie' to Retire Next Month

Posted at: 08/27/2013 6:31 PM
Updated at: 08/27/2013 10:39 PM

Not all crime investigators are human.

Twenty-six agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms spend all their days with a four-legged-friend by their sides. Eyewitness News got to meet Special Agent Mike Litman and his dog Charlie Tuesday afternoon.

Charlie, 10, sniffs out explosives. Out front of the Public Safety Building in Duluth he sniffed out a package inside a steel drawer in the back of a truck.

Pretty good right? So good Litman tells us ATF dogs like Charlie are used at the Super Bowl and World Series. He said the agency has 26, each of which is paired with an agent. He said the dogs are so well-respected that the State Department uses our dogs, and that they're in 23 different countries.

Charlie has a unique life. Litman said Charlie never eats out of a bowl. Instead, Charlie eats out of Litman's hand whenever he finds explosives. He said they train 365 days each year even if they're sick or it's a holiday.

Charlie and Litman met about eight years ago and have been inseparable ever since.

Litman said "Charlie is top shelf. He was originally supposed to go to Thailand. My original dog died halfway through training and I became friends with the Thais. Charlie was my gift so I could complete school. They gave me their extra dog. He holds that special place with me just for that."

Charlie is going to retire next month.