Every day leaky pipes mean that millions of litres of perfectly good water is wasted. However, one of the biggest challenges facing utility companies is finding those leaks in the first place because the leaks are often hidden somewhere in the the pipes under the ground.

The supplier 'Thames Water' is trialling a new method of detecting leaks. The firm has employed a sniffer dog with a very good nose for sniffing out when the pipes have sprung a leak.

  • Watch a report by Charlotte Briere-Edney

The trial is being run by Ross Stephenson, director of Canine Assisted Pest Eradication (CAPE), with his canine colleague Snipe, a three-year-old Sprocker spaniel.

“The dog is detecting the small amount of chlorine used to make tap water safe to drink. When underground pipes leak, some of which are 2m down, the chlorine from the water will come up through the surface.

Ross Stephenson, Trial scheme organiser