(WKBN) – In Ohio, Michigan and northern Kentucky, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) personnel seized more than 280,000 fentanyl-laced pills in 2022, as well as over 600 pounds of fentanyl powder, which is more than 19 million deadly doses. On Wednesday, we watched how a special kind of officer can help the drug task force.

Canine officers like Nix work daily to get drugs off the streets and out of the hands of Americans.

“Nix has done phenomenal work since he started, many seizures with him. So he’s doing really well,” said Aaron Young, an officer for the DEA and Canfield Police Department.

Young handles Nix. On Wednesday, he showed us how Nix is able to sniff out drugs during investigations.

“They help us. Obviously, they can smell a lot better than we can and they help us find drugs, especially on traffic stops, inside houses, on persons and so forth,” said Bryan Klutzaritz, a resident agent for the DEA.

According to the DEA, fentanyl is the deadliest drug threat facing this country. In 2022, the DEA seized more than 379 million deadly doses. We’re told the canines have a lot to do with the success.

“The dogs are a vital part of this, you know, helping locate, especially for a trooper or an officer on the street, searching for drugs that might be concealed within the car. The dogs are instrumental to that,” Klutzaritz said.

Nix went through a lengthy training with Young to be able to work on these types of seizures.

“Four to six week handler course. It’s every single day, Monday through Friday. You’re working on obedience with the dog, odor detection with the dog, any other specialties the dog may have,” Young said.

The DEA says they will continue to work each day to get illegal drugs off of the streets.