POLICE Magazine

NOV 2018

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Winning is much more than surviving conflict. Be completely prepared for your challenges with our inspiring and world-renowned classes with Dave "JD Buck Savage" Smith, Sgt. Betsy Brantner Smith, Nancy Fatura & team. 40 POLICE NOVEMBER 2018 puppy phase, they are evaluated for their prey drive. Smith explains that for the dog to be an effective law enforcement K-9 it has to learn to hunt. "eir job will be all about hunting, whether it's explosives, narcotics, or cellphones." Some of the dogs trained at K2 will also be hunting people, as multipurpose patrol K-9s. K2 trains and delivers a wide variety of dogs for its clients, including Belgian Malinois, German Shepherds, hybrid Mal-shep- herds, golden retrievers, and Labrador retrievers. FLOPPY EARS But much of the company's K-9 work now involves Labs. Labrador retrievers are in demand for explosive detection dogs, Smith says. e reason Labs are well suit- ed to explosion detection is they have a strong desire to hunt, they bond well with their handlers, and they offer an attribute that no pointy-eared dog can—people don't freak out around them. "Labs are a really good choice for this job, and they are good at it," says Smith. TRAIN TO WIN Bring the best in law enforcement training to your agency: CLASSES: The Winning Mind The Winning Mind for Women Career & Officer Survival For Dispatchers The Winning Edge (NEW 2-day class) Developing Successful Staff Skills (630) 399-1645 Winning is much more than surviving confl ict. Be completely prepared for your challenges with our inspiring and world-renowned classes with Dave "JD Buck Savage" Smith, Sgt. Betsy Brantner Smith, Sgt. Nancy Fatura & team. "People see a shepherd or a Malinois, and the first thing they think is that dog is go- ing to bite me; even some cops think that. But you bring out a Lab and people think, 'Aww, look at the puppy.' Most people don't try to avoid a Lab because they don't see it as a threat. ey see that nice fluffy dog with the floppy ears and they walk right by it, giving the dog a closer odor source and a better chance of detecting the odors you are trying to detect." According to Smith another benefit of working Labs for explosive detection in places like airports, concert halls, and sporting venues is they are great ambas- sadors for the agencies that use them. "It's pretty good PR," says Smith, who handled explosive detection Labs when he worked on the Charleston bomb squad. "People are a little more open to the officer. People will tell the officer, 'at's a good looking dog you have there.' ere's a lot more stress with a shepherd or a Mal. People can be hostile toward those dogs." e first phase of the specialized train- ing for the Person-Borne Explosive Detec- tion Dogs produced by K2 is static explo- sive detection. Some of the dogs excel in their explosive detection capabilities and prey drive, and they move on to become Person-Borne Explosive Detection Dogs. Others prove to be more suited to static explosive detection, which is still in high demand. "It takes extraordinary drive for a dog to follow an odor that is moving. e dog that has that is a special dog," Smith says. BUILDING A TEAM Person-borne explosive detection is not just about the dog. It's about the dog and the handler working as a team. e final stage of K2's program is eight weeks of training for the handler. Smith says the first step of this train- ing is matching the dog with the handler. Person-Borne Explosive Detection Dogs can find planted explosives or follow a bomber walking through a crowd. TRAINING THE BOMB HUNTERS

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