The cable network Animal Planet recently went to the Colombian emerald mines to document Tara, a Belgian Malinois that successfully sniffs for epoxy resins in emeralds, and other trained dogs for an upcoming television special.
The emerald-sniffing dogs, trained by Makor K-9 Dogs, Napa, CA, distinguish the odors emitted by epoxy resins from a variety of other known emerald enhancements, including cedarwood oil. These substances are routinely introduced in surface-reaching fissures in emeralds, which helps emeralds appear clearer. A story in the February issue of Professional Jeweler (p.86), tells how EmeraldStone, Inc. an emerald mining and buying company based in Victoria, Canada and Bogota, Colombia, uses the dogs for security purposes and to help separate enhancements when EmeraldStone buys parcels of emeralds in the field. EmeraldStone says it is committed to purchasing emeralds that contain no enhancements or emeralds that are enhanced only with cedarwood oil.
The show will air on Animal Planet March 17 at 11:00 a.m. EST, April 2 at 1:00 p.m. EST, April 25 at 1:00 p.m. EST, May 12 at 11:00 a.m. EST, May 21 at 1:30 p.m. EST and June 20 at 1:00 p.m. EST.
For more information, check out www.animal.discovery.com or www.emeraldstone.com.
- by Robert Weldon, G.G.
Image courtesy of EmeraldStone