'El Chapo' returns to prison -- with a dog tasting his food to check for poisoning
Drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman (AFP Photo/Alfredo Estrella)

Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman has his prison food tasted by a dog each day before he eats it to prevent anyone poisoning him, an official said Wednesday.

After his January 8 recapture, Guzman was returned to Altiplano, the same high-security prison that he escaped from through a tunnel six months ago.

A K9 unit guards the area where Mexico's most-wanted criminals are held, including Guzman, as part of new measures implemented three months ago, Eduardo Guerrero, the head of Mexico's penitentiary system, told Radio Imagen.

"A K9 tastes the food first because we must care for his physical integrity in case someone wants to poison him," Guerrero said, adding that the same thing is being done for other imprisoned drug barons.

Authorities have taken steps to prevent another escape, moving Guzman to a different cell 11 times since he was sent back to the prison.

"He was depressed when he arrived, tired, which is what he said in his first interview. He was very tired of being on the run," said Guerrero.

Officials gave Guzman a copy of the classic novel "Don Quixote" because "we think that it's an excellent book and I think that we must start giving him this type of reading material, so that he starts reading."