The Carmarthen puppies being specially trained to help tackle Africa's rhino poaching problem

  • Video report by ITV Wales Journalist Gwennan Campbell

Two puppies are being specially trained in a bid to help in the fight against rhino poaching in Africa.

Bavarian Mountain Hounds Nkosi and Thula will soon be deployed as anti-poaching dogs as part of conservation efforts to protect the endangered species in South Africa.

The 14-week-old puppies were born in Conwy but are now being trained in Carmarthen by Dogs 4 Wildlife, who help train dogs to work in anti-poaching canine units.

Dogs 4 Wildlife already have 13 dogs working in Africa. Credit: Dogs 4 Wildlife

Dogs 4 Wildlife already have 13 working canines in Africa helping with the effort.

Due to their excellent sense of smell, dogs have proven to be highly effective in tracking a poacher's scent for miles.

In 2021 alone, a total of 451 rhinos were poached in South Africa - 327 within government reserves and 124 on private property.

A further 259 rhinos were illegal hunted or captured in the first six months of 2022.

The pair puppies recently visited Cumbria Zoo to get familiar with the mammals they will one day protect, including a young newborn rhino calf.

The pups met a rhino calf during a recent trip to the zoo Credit: Dogs4Wildlife

The dogs recently visited a zoo to familiarise themselves with animals they may meet in Africa Credit: Dogs4Wildlife

According to organisation Save The Rhino, "Beyond their physical skills, dogs have another positive attribute for anti-poaching units: they are not corruptible. If they find an illegal substance, they will indicate so, regardless of who the suspect is."