Dogs On a Mission: 8 Amazing Jobs For Dogs (That People Can’t Do!)

A dog’s biggest job is to love people. And they do it well don’t they?

But as we know, our little furry friends are capable of so much more. For hundreds of years, dogs have been performing tasks around the farm or protecting our homes and property.

These days, dogs are doing a variety of jobs. Employers are taking advantage of the many talents dogs possess in ways that humans can’t match.

Keep reading to discover eight amazing jobs for dogs that’ll make you appreciate them even more.

1. Search and Rescue

Dog’s possess an incredible sense of smell, a trait that serves them well as part of search and rescue teams. These specially trained responders can detect the scent of missing people under incredible circumstances. They work to find their target in dangerous weather, in the wilderness, under debris and even underwater.

These dogs are heroes who put their bravery into action by retrieving lost victims of disaster situations.

2. Therapy

Dogs excel at making us feel better. That’s why many canines work as therapy dogs in hospitals, nursing homes, hospices, and disaster relief areas. These dogs give love and comfort to those who need it.

Many people benefit from the physical contact a dog provides which they may not be used to.

Any breed can become a certified therapy dog. They just need to interact with people well and have the ability to obey commands from their master.

3. Detection

Dogs make outstanding sniffing sleuths. Through their nose, they can detect humans, drugs, money, even illegal contraband in prison. It is common to see dogs working at police stations, borders, airports, prisons and schools.

These dogs even serve in wars as explosive detection agents who safeguard their troops from danger.

Even businesses in the private sector, such as security firms, use explosive dog detection (EDD). If your business has such a need, you can learn more here.

Many military dogs return home with their masters. These loyal friends assist veterans by lessening symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

4. Service

Service dogs help people with tasks they may find difficult. For example, a hearing dog is trained to alert someone with a hearing disability of a variety of sounds, including a ringing phone, doorbell, alarm clock or smoke alarm.

These helpful animals aid the deaf, blind, autistic, and those who need assistance walking. They also give independence to those who suffer from seizures and who require psychiatric services.

These incredible animals can remind their masters of important tasks such as taking their medication or going on a walk.

It’s important to interact with service animals the right way so they can do their jobs effectively.

5. Herding

Herding dogs round up livestock by running around them and barking to get them into groups. It’s amazing that one dog can round up hundreds of cattle or sheep and bring them out to pasture or back to the farm.

So when you see a dog running around and barking at other dogs, understand it’s in their blood. They think it’s their job to round up the other dogs.

Breeds commonly use for herding include Australian cattle dogs and border collies. The cattle dogs stay behind the cattle and bark and nip at their feet to drive them forward. For this reason, they are known as heelers. Meanwhile, border collies are the headers because they run to the head of the group. They get the herd to change direction by staring them down in the eyes.

6. Watchdog

Dogs are natural watchdogs who have been guarding humans and other animals for centuries. They sense trouble with their outstanding smelling and hearing abilities and ward off danger by barking forcefully.

Rottweilers are a popular breed of guard dog due to their fierce loyalty to family and property as well as their wariness of others.

Some even say that Rottweilers were originally used as guard dogs because of their brown markings over their eyes. The markings look like eyebrows, making a sleeping Rottweiler appear to be awake intruders and livestock. While that may be an urban legend, the breed has been dutifully on the watch for centuries.

German Shepards, Doberman Pinschers, Akitas, and Cairn Terriers are also adept guard dogs.

7. Water Rescue

Water rescue requires a special type of working dog, and the dog most commonly used are Newfoundlands, or “Newfies.” These incredible dogs have a thick coat of fur which is actually waterproof. It insulates them from cold water.

What’s more, Newfies have webbed toes which help them to swim faster with less effort. And unlike other dogs, they do not dog paddle. Their swimming motion is more similar to that of humans.

On top of it all, Newfoundlands have strong lung capacity giving them the stamina they need to swim out to those in distress. They grab victims with their mouths which are strong yet gentle. Then they pull them safely to the shore.

8. Police Dogs / K-9

Last but not least is our favorite K-9 dogs who assist the police to keep us all safe. These brave animals sniff out buildings for bad guys and pursue suspects with speed and determination. They use their noses to detect cadavers, drugs, and other items to assist their human colleagues to enforce the order.

German Shepherds are the most common breed for K-9 work, but bloodhounds, labs, and malinois also assist our police force.

Final Thoughts About Jobs for Dogs

Dogs are talented in ways they often don’t get credit for. They are smart enough to be trained for countless jobs for dogs. For instance, many dogs act on television and in movies. Sled dogs work in hazardous weather conditions to provide transportation and deliveries.

But what we like most about our dogs is that they love us unconditionally. No matter what your dog can do, all they really want is to make you happy and they want nothing more than to receive your love.

If you found this content helpful, please check out our guide on the four causes of dog bites now.

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Melissa Thompson

Melissa is a mother of 2, lives in Utah, and writes for a multitude of sites. She is currently the EIC of and writes about health, wellness, and business topics.