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Sniffer dog kennel told to ‘clean its act up’

A kennel housing dogs which are trained to work in war zones has been refused a licence, allegedly due to their deteriorating condition.

The private contractors that run the Defence Animal Centre in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, must now make urgent improvements, after which the situation will be reviewed by Melton Borough Council in November.

The centre specialises in training dogs to sniff out drugs and explosives. It can continue operating for now despite not being granted a licence by the local authority, the Ministry of Defence said.
A statement released by the council said: "The wooden kennels at the facility are deteriorating and action is needed to improve the accommodation."

The inspector found "significant deterioration in the accommodation" but said the cleanliness at the centre was "of a good standard".

The centre's dogs include Labradors and spaniels, which are used in battle zones, including Afghanistan and Iraq. A MoD spokesman said: "We are fully aware that the kennels at the Defence Animal Centre require replacement. Realm (the company) currently manages all of the facilities at the centre, and we are working urgently with them to establish how and when a replacement plan is to be put in place."

The MoD's Defence Animal Centre is the military's leading canine and equine training centre in the UK.