U security in dog house

Plans are to build on-the-lot kennel to house canines

Universal Studios, Universal Pictures, and now … Universal Kennels?

All of Hollywood’s movie studios have beefed up security in the post-Sept. 11 world, sparing no expense to add concrete barricades, armed guards, x-ray machines for packages and even explosive-sniffing dogs.

But with the duration for the war on terrorism looking more and more like months or years, Universal has begun to look at ways to cut security costs: Insiders familiar with U’s plans say the dogs are “here to stay” and that the studio is planning to build an on-the-lot kennel to house the half dozen (currently rented) canine patrolers.

A spokeswoman for the studio would not confirm the kennel plan, but did say that “considering the long range aspects of our security plans, we’re looking at all our options.”

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