Buster the Beagle meets public ahead of training at AgFest

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After a tricky start in life, Buster is turning heads at Agfest

The public has the chance to meet their new biosecurity control at Agfest.

Buster the Beagle was meeting and greeting crowds of adoring people in the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment tent today.

Buster made headlines last year when he was found dumped in a box at Seven Mile Beach, east of Hobart, with his eight siblings when he was just a two-weeks-old pup.

Buster and his brother were the only two puppies to survive being dumped.

Picked up by Biosecurity Tasmania as a potential trainee, Hobart's Mercury newspaper ran a competition for readers to name the pup who quickly became a favourite with readers.

Now nine-months-old, Buster was one of five lucky dogs to be picked for biosecurity training.

Rhonda Hall, co-director of the detector dog program for Biosecurity Tasmania, said that Agfest was a great place for Buster to be before his training begins.

“It helps him learn not to be distracted by the many people, sounds and smells that are about,” she said.

Ms Hall said that beagles are the perfect breed of dog to be trained for biosecurity matters.

“They are born to be detector dogs, they have a fantastic temperament and a great nose,” she said. 

Buster will start off learning to detect prohibited fruit and vegetables, and work his way up to detecting illegal drugs.