A truffle farmer in Canberra is rescuing dogs from shelters across Australia and giving them a new home and lots of love by training the pups as truffle-hunters.
Jayson Mesman used to train law enforcement dogs, but now owns the only truffle farm in the Australian Capital Territory.
He rescues labradors from shelters, who are often given up by their owners for being so energetic, and puts their strong noses to work hunting out the rare truffles.
“I actually go into the pound and look for dogs that people quite often can’t maintain,” says Jayson, “Those with a really strong hunt drive, wanting to play constantly, the dog that chases the ball until he falls over, almost.”
And the dogs just think it’s one big, never-ending game of hide and seek (and they’re more than happy to play all day), according to Jayson.
“They don’t consider it work, it’s not a chore in any sense. The key is making sure they’re having a good time.”
“Every dog is trainable, it’s just finding that key nice that they want to work for,” thinks Jayson.
One dog, Simba, was challenging to train until they realized this puppy just wanted cuddles for all his hard work.
“I’d spent hours [with Simba] in the paddock with balls and food. He found his first truffle when [we] gave him a hug. All he wants is a hug.”
Jayson’s farm has been so successful he’s now offering his expertise to other people. He says: “I’m trying to rescue as many dogs as I can and put them onto people that can use them.”
If you know someone who might like this, please click “Share!”