LINTHICUM, Md. – Future guide dogs had an opportunity to practice going through a Transportation Security Administration checkpoint at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) last night (July 15) so that they would be more familiar with the checkpoint screening process when they do need to catch a flight.
TSA officials screened 27 puppies and their trainers from the Guiding Eyes for the Blind’s puppy raising regions of Baltimore, Bay, Catoctin, Delmarva and Montgomery, as they came through the checkpoint in an effort to acclimate the future guide dogs with an important piece of the airport experience.
TSA officials know that the checkpoint orientation session will result in a smoother checkpoint experience when the puppies graduate into certified guide dogs and return to take a flight. This type of familiarization exercise allows the canines and their trainers to know what to expect when the dogs and the people they are trained to guide, return with plans to take a flight. The orientation session also served as a good review and reinforcement of TSA procedures for screening service animals for TSA officers who were working at the checkpoint.