Fifteen hydroelectric plants provide power to the 3 million people of Dagestan, and each of them is a tempting target for terrorists in a Russian republic facing an Islamic insurgency. Their security is paramount, and it starts with dogs.
Forty German and Belgian shepherds join guards in safeguarding the plants, sniffing out any sign of trouble. Photographer Yuri Ivashchenko spent five days at the Chirkey and Miatli power stations in 2014 shooting his series Dagestan Cynology.
His work for the dog-training company Rushydro got off to an awkward start when a pregnant German shepherd escaped her cage and bit his leg. “The handlers joked that it was a greeting,” Ivashchenko says. He followed the handlers and their dogs as they patrolled the plants and surrounding mountains, searched cars and trucks, and completed training exercises.
Ivaschenko came to appreciate the bond between handlers and their dogs, who trust each other with their lives. “It is a very intimate relationship,” he says.
Go Back to Top. Skip To: Start of Article.