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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 February 2008, 12:04 GMT
German police dogs to wear shoes
Dusseldorf police dog in shoes
Training for the dogs is going well
Police dogs in the German city of Dusseldorf are being trained to wear shoes to protect them against injuries from broken glass.

Dusseldorf's team of 20 German and Belgian shepherds are at risk from smashed bottles in the city centre, a police spokesman said.

Training to help the dogs get used to the shoes, which arrived two weeks ago, is said to be going well.

It is hoped that dogs will be wearing them on patrol next month.

Minor injuries

The dogs perform routine protection duties and are also trained to find drugs and explosives.

Police spokesman Gunter Herring said the main risk was in Dusseldorf's old city centre, known for its late-night drinking.

"There are many people and sometimes in the late evening or during the night we have drunken people and they throw their bottles or glasses away," Mr Herring told the BBC News website.

The dogs have picked up minor injuries in the past, he said.

"Now we are conditioning the dogs to wearing their shoes to protect them in these areas from the glass and cuts."

The dogs are also at risk around the city's large football stadium, Mr Herring said.

The plastic shoes are freely available on the market and were not made specially for Dusseldorf police.

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