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First day down, 4 - 6 weeks to go ....

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  • First day down, 4 - 6 weeks to go ....

    Just reported this morning for my first day of K-9 training. Rocky start.... dog wasn't as impressed with me as i was with him, as was evident by his trying to remove at least one perfectly good digit.

    I'm a first time handler, other than a few months training with some military dogs a few years ago while on active duty, i have no experience. My dept just started up the K-9 program again, after not having one for about 4 or 5 years. I am constantly reminded that me and my mali will set the bar, meaning if i don't do good with the dog after we hit the road, chances are the county will not front the bill for the next 3.

    The dog is a 18 month old Mali, extreme high drive, traind in aggression, narcotic, tracking and article search. Very work oriented, and energetic. I've got my hands full, and hoping that my family doen't end up being the ones who suffer from this decision due to time spent training and working the dog for the next 8 or so years.

    Honestly, after all that, i guess i'm just looking for words of encouragement. Anybody else have any success stories after initially 2nd guessing their decision ? Maybe it's just home sickness and missing my 1 yr old, but i'm really hoping this wasn't a bad decision for my family.
    No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country. GEN. George S. Patton

    Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.
    Gen George S. Patton

  • #2
    Perhaps I'm not understanding your initial post. You say the dog is already trained in tracking and narcotics, yet you're in school for 4-6 weeks. What are you looking to accomplish in this time period?

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    • #3
      Sounds like my trainng, the dog had some initial training before me, and probably back in the Motherland across the pond...where are you training, you dont have to give me the school, but maybe the location, im curious if your going through the same school i did

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      • #4
        The dog is trained in tracking, agression and article search ... he gets the majority of his dope work done while i'm training with him, and yes it was across the pond for the initials. My trainer wants to train the dog in the narcotics,so that he can train him his way, and be able to fix problems without having to figure out how the dog was trained by someone else.

        Better part of 2 days down.... couple more article searches today, then tomorrow's another day.
        No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country. GEN. George S. Patton

        Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.
        Gen George S. Patton

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        • #5
          Give it at least a year. It will take that long for you to fully know all the ins and out of your dog. Hang in there it does get better.

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          • #6
            I was training for nearly 6 months (first dog didnt cut it) it does get better honest! Im now 3 years into it and still learning as is the dog, Its like no other LEO training and it never stops, that's what makes it the best job (personal opinion) hopefully your bosses realize this and will give you time to settle in, its a learning curve but when things click into place the dog will amaze you, I still have other officers stand back scratch there heads and say wow that was f#####g amazing the dog is worth its weight in gold.
            Good luck
            'Not By Strength, By Guile'

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            • #7
              Woody, if you can please continue to update how its going. I'm waiting to go to training anytime now. I know its what I want to do, but its such a commitment that it scares me at times. So reading what your going through and how you adjust will give me alot of insight. By the way, Im in NC too.
              Susupect Suspect..I have a trianed K9 come out come out or you will be bitten.

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              • #8
                Keep your head up it gets better. When I was put into K9 I had no experience as a police handler and the dog which we had for about two years was bad tempered to say the least. The previous handler had abused the dog, our dog was to be just a drug dog, but the handler had him crossed trained in bite work. Then all he did train was bite work. Also he only feed the dog on duty so the dog was only feed about twice a week. This other handler had him at his house with his girlfriend and then left her and the dog, he did not work the dog and when he did he beat the dog.
                When I was given the dog it took me almost two weeks to be able to get in the kennel just to feed the dog with out him attacking. I stuck with it and now people don't believe it is the same dog. There was even talk having to put the dog down , but I gave him some love and respect (and feed him regularly and he went from 50 lbs. to his current weight of 86 lbs.) and started to work just drugs with him. This dog is good at what he does, find drugs. I have had this dog a year now and he works well. Just hang in there.
                P.S. I have a German Shepard. We went through a handler school (more for me than the dog) and he passed the NNDDA standard very easily.
                Live everyday as if it is your Last! Because someday you will be right.

                Everyone has a game plan until they get punched in the mouth.

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                • #9
                  woody, where are you in school, rocky mount by chance? anyway, i got a mali with a few problems about 3 years ago. it took about 6 months of hard training to get him where i wanted him, but after that point it's all maintenance. are you going to certify with the ncpda, npwda or uspca? if ncpda i can get you some good training dates. good luck.


                  Quote: Welcome to K-9......

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                  • #10
                    Where are you in school at?
                    South Bloomfield Police Department
                    K9 Unit


                    American Working Dog Council

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                    • #11
                      Had my basic school and it took 10 weeks. The dog was a titled dog and I was a new handler. The dogs, unless your getting a green dog, come to the states most times with tracking and aggression and sometimes article search, but for the most part you teach everything else. Detection work is all learned here when we do our school.

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