So Many Animals Work At Canada's Airports & Their Little Jobs Will Make Your Heart Explode

The hardest workers ever. 🥺

Pilot the dog sitting on the runway wearing his protective glasses with an airplane in the background. Right: Rusty the detector cat wearing a vest with "Do not pet" written on it.
Senior Editor

Pilot the dog sitting on the runway wearing his protective glasses with an airplane in the background. Right: Rusty the detector cat wearing a vest with "Do not pet" written on it.

Animal workers can be found all over Canada. It's not just humans who work hard to keep Canadian airports and borders safe. So many animals work in airports across Canada and their little (but very important!) jobs will make your heart swell with pride.

From therapy kitties and specialist dogs to wildlife management birds and even a so-called "detector cat," here's a look at some of the furry friends who spend their days looking after passengers and travellers all over the country:


Name: Goose

Occupation: Detection Dog

Details: This K9 has a very important role at Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport. Goose, along with his furry coworkers, is a detection dog who is on the lookout for explosives and similar dangers. You're doing amazing, sweetie!


Name: Taz

Occupation: Pre-Board Pal

Details: At Calgary International Airport, a number of fluffy critters work as "pre-board pals," including Taz. These therapy animals roam the terminals to greet visitors and make them feel at ease before they head off. Eek!


Name: Bailey

Occupation: LASI Dog

Details: Over at Vancouver International Airport, there are seven different Less Airport Stress Initiative (LASI) dogs. Their job is to be a support service by helping passengers manage anxiety associated with travelling. Bailey looks like he would be very helpful indeed.


Name: Pilot

Occupation: Wildlife Management Team

Details: Pilot works with Vancouver International Airport's wildlife management team to keep birds and planes safe. He does this by scaring off any critters in the area and keeping the plane runways clear. He even wears little glasses!


Name: Bella

Occupation: Detector Dog

Details: Bella's job is to keep stuff that shouldn't come into Canada out of Canada. She's even a specialist, focusing particularly on food, plants and animal products. Good job, B.


Name: Guy

Occupation: Wildlife Management Bird

Details: OK — this guy is impressive. At Vancouver International Airport, the wildlife team works with giant feathered faces to keep real birds away from metal birds. While they use other techniques, such as pyrotechnics and lights, the sight of a predator keeps small birds away for much longer. Details of his real name were unavailable, so we made this one up.


Name: Shep

Occupation: Welcome Team Therapy Dog

Details: This fuzzy fluff works at Toronto Pearson with his handler Alex. His job is to hang out in the terminals and provide enjoyment and comfort to passengers, especially around stressful areas like security. We love you, Shep.


Name: Echo

Occupation: Wildlife Management Team

Details: Echo is a tinier version of Pilot. At Vancouver Airport, she will train to become like her hairy colleague and learn to scare birds away from the airfield. Aww.


Name: Bond

Occupation: Police Service Dog Trainer

Details: Not only does Bond act as a Police Service Dog, but she also trains other service dogs to do her job, too. She helps out at Edmonton International Airport to sniff out explosive threats. Talk about multi-talented.


Name: Levis

Occupation: Detector Dog

Details: Specializing in drug and firearms detection, this handsome K9 keeps Canada's borders and airports as safe as possible. He's pretty adorable, too.


Name: Gabbie

Occupation: Wildlife Management Bird

Details: Like her feathered friends elsewhere, Gabbie the hawk works hard at Ottawa Airport to control the presence of birds near the runway. Her presence keeps birds away from planes, keeping animals and humans as safe as possible.


Name: Rusty

Occupation: Detector Cat

Details: OK, this may have been an April Fools' Day joke from Ottawa Airport, but Rusty the "detector cat" is pretty cool. He may not really work to sniff out "things that are fishy," but he looks pretty amazing in that little jacket!

This article has been updated since it was originally published on August 3, 2021.

Helena Hanson
Senior Editor
Helena Hanson is a Senior Editor for Narcity Media, leading the Travel and Money teams. She previously lived in Ottawa, but is now based in the U.K.