Military Dog Knowhow

Written By: Jim russell - Jun• 06•14


Every dog can be a top dog. Tactical Dog

Every dog can be a top dog. Tactical Dog

MILITARY DOG TRAINING is all about preparing ordinary canines for the unpredictable environment of worldwide policing. It is the feedback recieved from Military Working Dog Handlers in the field that allow the K9 Basic Training Program to adapt, and create training scenarios that prepare a new dog team for current active duty working conditions.

It is this chain of communication that keeps the MILITARY WORKING DOG PROGRAM successful and makes it a dominant force in the military worldwide peacekeeping mission.

It is true that the Military Working Dog Handlers are the first link in the chain and they in turn report to their trainers what the dog may need to work on to perform its current assigned duties. The trainer will in turn report any major changes in training needed for the completion of the mission. This information works its way up to Training Command  and may become an addition to the current basic training k9 program.

When i myself was Assistant Dog Trainer at Clark Air Base in the Phillipines it was the largest K9 base at the time with 120 active duty dogs. We would visit roughly 15 dogs per night on their assigned post and perform some form of training with the dog and handler. Often i would have to create training scenarios that utilized the terrain and unique working area like the huge dried out river beds called “Washouts”, and we were allowed by the Base Commander to create a special dog unit called S.W.I.D.S.

This newly formed unit was to work sunset to sunrise patrolling the washouts as they were being used by intruders to gain access to the base undetected. This Special Washout Intruder Detection Squad worked independantly of the normal base security and answered directly to the Base Commander. We had seven dog teams that made up this unit and we had access to any equipment we asked for. This unit was active for over a year until it was disbanded and i will cover the history of Swids in another article, for now just understand that many aspects of Dog Training exist in the military, some of which you may never be aware of, yet it was a huge experiment in the utilization of the MILITARY WORKING DOG PROGRAM.

You yourself can adapt to any condition that you and your dog are faced with if you create a practice scenario that is close to the actual conditions you will be facing. It’s play acting in a safe controlled training session, that lets the dog and handler get familiar with dealing with what you are training for.














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