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  • Becoming a k-9 officer?

    I was wondering how does one get on the k-9 division. Is it something that you are chosen for, or can you apply.

    If you can apply, what do they look for in a good candidate.

  • #2
    Originally posted by uzi4u View Post
    I was wondering how does one get on the k-9 division. Is it something that you are chosen for, or can you apply.

    If you can apply, what do they look for in a good candidate.
    Depends on the size of agency. Our department only has two dogs, and they stay in service for about 8 or 9 years. If an opening is coming up, get in good with all the K9 guys, and volunteer to go and put on the bite suit while they're training.

    In most places you apply and go through the process (usually includes or oral board). If your reason for applying is "I had a dog when I was 8 and always wanted another"... then don't even think about it.

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    • #3
      Like mentioned above, get with the current K9 guys and help out in training. Learn to be a decoy as it is more than just getting bit. There is alot that goes into becoming a good K9 team and the helper/decoy can be a vital part of that. Learn as much as you can about the K9 position. Pay attention when at a training session and ask questions. Last but not least, realize that the handler is "the dummy at the end of the leash". Good luck and have fun. Being a K9 handler is the most fun thing I have done in police work.

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      • #4
        A lot of agencies may require you to be a police officer out on the field for 2-3 years before applying for a k-9 or specialized position. In fact, the k-9 area for most of Arizona's LEO agencies is in the same specialized field as advancement opportunities:


        bomb squad
        criminal investigations
        K-9
        Mounted Units
        S.W.A.T
        Motor Units
        Helicopter aerial divisions

        etc. etc.

        Again, I am just referencing that some agencies may require you to "hit the streets" first as a patrolman than go on.

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        • #5
          I spent about 15 years in K-9. Realize you lock yourself into a specialty which may hold back your career advancement. Would I do it again? You bet!

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          • #6
            You can apply when they open up the position, but you do have to do your time (usually 2-3 yrs, incl. probation, in some agencies) as patrol.
            The sheep generally do not like the sheepdog. He looks a lot like the wolf. He has fangs and the capacity for violence. The difference, though, is that the sheepdog must not, cannot and will not ever harm the sheep. Any sheepdog who intentionally harms the lowliest little lamb will be punished and removed.

            I Am the Sheepdog.


            "And maybe just remind the few, if ill of us they speak,
            that we are all that stands between
            the monsters and the weak." - Michael Marks


            sigpic

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            • #7
              types of dogs

              what types of dogs do you normally have as your partner. I know the typical dogs i see are German Sheppard's but are you allowed to have labs?

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              • #8
                Belgian Malamois, German Shepherd, Golden Retriever, Labs, Bloodhounds, Border Collies... depends on the agency, the mission of the K9 unit (patrol, SAR, Explosives, etc), and the environment.
                The sheep generally do not like the sheepdog. He looks a lot like the wolf. He has fangs and the capacity for violence. The difference, though, is that the sheepdog must not, cannot and will not ever harm the sheep. Any sheepdog who intentionally harms the lowliest little lamb will be punished and removed.

                I Am the Sheepdog.


                "And maybe just remind the few, if ill of us they speak,
                that we are all that stands between
                the monsters and the weak." - Michael Marks


                sigpic

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks for the help can any of those dogs go in any of those specfic jobs or are there certain ones for each job. Cause generally you don't see a lab chasing down a suspect generally its a German Sheppard. But if you got training with a lab could he be part of the patrol unit to hunt suspects on the run down?
                  Last edited by bigpike15; 08-15-2008, 11:26 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by bigpike15 View Post
                    Thanks for the help can any of those dogs go in any of those specfic jobs or are there certain ones for each job. Cause generally you don't see a lab chasing down a suspect generally its a German Sheppard. But if you got training with a lab could he be part of the patrol unit to hunt suspects on the run down?
                    Labs typically don't have the drives or temperament to be successful patrol dogs. You usually see labs doing scent work only, either explosives or narcotics. Bloodhounds are typically single-use dogs as well; they're only used for tracking. Patrol or multi-use (patrol and drugs or patrol and explosives) dogs are usually a German Shepherd, Belgian Malinois, or Dutch Shepherd. You will sometimes see some other breeds in there, but IMHO, labs have no business doing patrol work. If you're afraid of working with a dog like a Shepherd or Malinois, you don't belong in K9.
                    "The sheep generally do not like the sheepdog. He looks a lot like the wolf. He has fangs and the capacity for violence. The difference, though, is that the sheepdog must not, can not and will not ever harm the sheep." -Lt. Col. Dave Grossman

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