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Accelerant Detection Canines

Each year for National Arson Awareness Week, the U.S. Fire Administration gathers and shares information to raise awareness of arson or youth firesetting and provide individuals with strategies to combat these problems in their community.
a dog paw print

This year’s National Arson Awareness Week theme is “Accelerant Detection Canines (ADC) – Sniffing Out Arson.”

This year's awareness materials:

Provide information about the value and contribution ADC’s make to fire departments and communities.

Describe how using an ADC in a community closes more cases and acts as an arson deterrent.

Highlight how ADC teams visit schools and community organizations to teach fire safety and prevention.

Identify successful practices in communities throughout the United States.


The number of times more acute an ADC’s sense of smell is compared to a human’s.

– James Walker, former director of the Sensory Research Institute at Florida State University


The average number of minutes it takes an ADC to cover an average fire scene. It can take humans days to do what a dog does in minutes.

– State Farm Arson Dog Program


The average number of canine team-collected lab samples needed to identify accelerant use, compared to 20 samples collected by a human alone.

– Paul Gallagher, Head Trainer, Maine Specialty Dogs for State Farm Arson Dog Program

Learn about canine teams in action across America


Featured: Meet Daisy from New York

ADC:Daisy, black Labrador retriever
Handler:Detective John V. Peters
Community:Westchester County, New York
Training:State Farm Arson Dog Program

Daisy was recently called in on a cold case homicide from 2007. She indicated on the only two cans suspected of having accelerants in them, leading to renewed interest in the case with the possibility for a murder conviction.

Detective Peters and his canine partner Daisy work for the Westchester County Police located north of New York City. In 2013, Daisy worked 67 cases with nearly half identified as intentional, resulting in further arson investigation. During a recent fire investigation in Yonkers, several children displaced as a result of the fire remembered Daisy from a visit to their school. Daisy comforted the children during this trying time.

A true modern dog — Daisy has 1,300 Likes on her Facebook page, “Daisy the Arson Detection Dog.”