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India's first and only Police K9 Journal published by Police K9 Cell, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India

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Published by chugpk, 2021-06-01 01:42:02

National Police K9 Journal Oct 2020

India's first and only Police K9 Journal published by Police K9 Cell, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India

Keywords: Police K9,Police Service K9,Police Dog,Indian Police Dog

PM Modi Lauds

Courage of Police and Military Forces

The stellar role of K9 soldiers in "Our armed forces and security Frontier Force (SFF), in turn, sniffed
detecting explosives, tracking forces have many such brave dogs out an "initiator or accelerant" that
terrorists and rescuing disaster who not only live for the country could have been used to fabricate
victims came in for special mention but also sacrifice themselves for an IED in the heart of Delhi.
during 'Mann Ki Baat' address by the the country. Such K9s have played
Hon'ble Prime Minister Narender a very important role in thwarting The PM also mentioned Balram, a
Modi on 30 Aug 2020. "Two Army numerous bomb blasts and dog who uncovered ammunition
"Brave-hearts", Sophie (a golden- terrorist conspiracies," he said. It on the Amarnath Yatra route in
brown Cocker Spaniel) and Vida is noteworthy that Army Dog Vida 2006, and Bhawna, who detected
(a black Labrador), received the was instrumental in the detection an IED but was killed along with
'Chief of Army Staff Commendation of five mines and a grenade buried her handler when it exploded while
Cards' this Independence Day underground, which prevented being defused in the year 2002.
because they had performed their casualties among soldiers in "Two or three years ago in Bijapur,
duties diligently while protecting Kashmir Valley. The ED K9 Sophie Chhattisgarh, a sniffer dog Cracker
their country", said the PM. of the Dog Squad of the Special (a Belgian Shepherd Malinois) of
CRPF also attained martyrdom in an


pressure IED and the K9 attained
martyrdom while saving many lives.

Since July last year, the K9s have
detected 30 IEDs and other arms
and ammunition as well as led to
the elimination of five terrorists.
The PM said "fabulous" indigenous
breeds such as Mudhol Hound,
Himachali Hound, Rajapalayam,
Kanni, Chippiparai and Kombai
were capable, cheaper to raise
and better adapted to the Indian
environmental conditions.

"Our security agencies are also

inducting these Indian breed

Army Dogs Sofi (on left) and Vida (on right) being honoured with Chief of Army dogs…The next time you think of
Staff Commendation Certificates on the Occasion of Independence Day 2020 raising a pet dog, consider bringing
home one of these Indian breeds.

IED blast. You might have also seen its camp after a combing operation At a time when `Atmanirbhar

a very moving scene on TV a few in Modakpal police station area, in Bharat' is becoming a mantra of

days ago, in which the Beed Police Bijapur which is known for Naxal the people, how can any domain

were giving their K9 colleague attacks. The ROP, accompanied by be left untouched by its influence?"

Rocky a final farewell. Rocky had the K9 Cracker, had launched the he said. He also exhorted people

helped the police in solving over operation from its camp in Chinna to adopt Indian breed dogs if they

300 cases," said PM Modi. Kodepal village. Just 2km ahead were planning to keep pets.

CRPF K9 Cracker was a highly skilled of the camp, Cracker, sniffed a

Dual Purpose K9 trained in Patrol

and Explosive Detection and had

detected several IEDs (improvised

explosive device) in Bastar during

April 2017.Cracker died while he

detected a pressure bomb IED

planted by Maoists which went

off in Chhattisgarh's Bijapur district

while he alerted for the IED. The

device got triggered probably due

to some movement during sniffing/

alerting and exploded, killing

the K9. His Handler Constable B

Bhanu Prakash Reddy, received

minor injuries on his hand while

others remained unhurt being at a

distance. The incident occurred at

around 1620 hours when a Road

Opening Party (ROP) of CRPF's Epitome of Extreme Sacrifice: CRPF Dog Cracker
170th battalion was returning to


Articles/Features – Technical Articles

Obedience to Odour

Kenneth D. Licklider, SMSgt, US Air Force (Retired)
Owner, Vohne Liche Kennels

Introduction to work this out by making the dog Obedient to Odour. Why do dogs
responsible for training him to be respond to stimulus and why and
I have been involved in the obedient to odour. My contention how certain drives get them to
detector dog world since 1977. In was if the dog was trained properly respond…Who or what are they
my early years, I was taught to walk to truly understand that the obedient to? The handler? The
backwards blocking my dogs and target odour had the true path to reward? Detector Dog Drives…
searching using the inverted “V” his reward he would do his job pretty basic right? What natural
pattern as most of us are taught. I without as much help from the predatory instinct makes the dog
hated it. It made no sense to me handler and what I mean by help do what they do? It all starts in
and I was tired of tripping over is without the handler cueing his nature with drives.
things, falling down steps and dog. The following information
hitting my head on low hanging hopefully helps explain my premise The HUNT DRIVE is the most
shelves. I also could not make sense “Obedience to Odour” important drive for the detection
of walking backwards with the tool dog. In the wild, without their
trained to tell me the location of Obedience to Odour natural hunt drive, they wouldn’t
my quest behind me, why would be able to find their food or prey
I want to get there first. I looked at Why? One of the greatest questions which means they won’t eat. We
my dog as a confirmation dog, not ever constructed. One word yet so use this drive to teach them to find
a true detector dog. I finally vowed encompassing and regardless of the the odours that they have paired
to change my ways when I became subject, if you can answer that one- that gets them their toy or reward.
an explosive detector dog handler/ word question, you are way ahead The fact is they don’t care about
trainer. I could not justify walking of the masses. Of course in this cocaine, marijuana, TNT, etc. They
backwards and getting to the object context, we are talking about why have never hunted for cocaine or
I was searching for that could blow detection dogs do what they do. TNT monster that has never run
up and harm me and my dog first. through the woods causing their
It was obvious that the dogs would prey drive to kick in! At the end
readily watch for body cues instead of the day, they want their reward.
of using the odour as it’s only And how do they get it? We teach
prompt to respond. Obedience to them to pair the reward with the
odour did not exist. The dogs were odour(s). Putting your dog on a
dependant on the handler instead of toy (food) reward teaches them
the handler dependant on the dog. to pair the odours that have been
More time than I can remember imprinted to get them their reward/
trainers blamed handlers for food. The dog considers the reward
mistakes due to them not “reading as food.
the dog”! It was an excuse when
poorly trained dogs missed on aid PREY DRIVE is a natural drive in the
or non-productively responded dog to chase, catch and consume.
during a search. I was determined It is not ideal to have a dog that is


high prey and low hunt. Cocaine to the dog’s reward system. It is actually. They care about four things
won’t run to entice the dog to go teaching the dog to respond to comprising of Food, Water, Air and
after it. If the dog has high hunt and the stimulus to get their reward. Procreation. Which do we use in
low prey you will find the dog won’t Contrary to some schools of detection training? All but water!
stay with the target odour and will thought multiple odours can be Toy = Food, Sex (Procreation) =
continue to hunt. A dog with this imprinted at one time. The best Praise, Air = deprivation to retrieve
combination won’t care much for analogy is the stew theory. The stew toy.
their reward and the hunt itself is theory says that as people when we
satisfying enough. You want a good walk into grandma’s kitchen and Dogs are survivalists, cheaters and
balance of both HUNT and PREY. she is making her delicious stew, lazy and will do the least they can
we smell…the stew as an object. to get their reward. The equation
PLAY DRIVE is a popular engineered Mmmm. Stew. The dog, however, S=R=R, Stimulus = Response =
term created to describe puppy or because of their far superior Reward is what we are after. In
younger dog behaviour. It doesn't olfactory senses, identifies the stew practical terms, the equation is spelt
exist when a group of puppies are AND differentiates its components. out as (S) Odour = (R) Passive (Sit)
rolling around it isn’t play drive, it The meat, the broth, the carrots, = (R) Ball. The trick is to get them
is dominance (pack drive). From the potatoes, the peas all at the to behave in the manner you want
the beginning, the dog being a same time. They can isolate each while at the same time convincing
pack animal asserts their will to odour and as such, they learn by them their behaviour meets their
dominate. The one who becomes excluding, not adding. needs. Understanding chaining is
dominant is the leader and is the the next logical step to figuring out
one who eats first and the one that Handlers and trainers need to why the dog does what it does and
procreates. understand dogs’ motivation. What how to manipulate that behaviour
dogs care about? to maximize success.
We utilize the canine’s drives to
tie the need for hunt and prey to Avoid anthropomorphism. In other Dogs Learn by Chaining Behaviour
odour. Imprintation is the concept words, we should not be putting which means that the behaviour of
of imprinting a specific odour human traits and behaviours the prior step in the chain starts the
on the dog. What do dogs care process of beginning the next step.
about? The answer is pretty simple To the dog seeing the same thing


means what they have associated On the other hand, if you’re not Odour drops. Find the path of least
with that behaviour follows that the rewarding because of safety then resistance and start at doorways.
same sequence they have learned you’re rewarding wrong. Drop
is going to happen again, such as the toy over his head. You don’t There are several misconceptions
rewarding every time the same need to throw hard. If you’re about odour contamination that
way. They have learned what is rewarding every time in training should be cleared up before
coming next. It is crucial to change but you’re not on the street, you moving on.
the process up and one of the will see a definite change in the • Utilizing Gloves and Tongs
biggest mistakes of well-intentioned dog’s demeanour. Every time he
handlers is how they reward. responds to odour on the street and ABSOLUTELY does not do what
you don’t reward, he gets thrown we think it does. Gloves do not
Reward at Source This isn’t a hard back in the car where he doesn’t keep human odour off, actually
concept, but many handlers and want to be. This can cause him to ADDS an additional odour
trainers have trouble. Don’t react lose interest, get stressed and he • Skin rifts – mainly fall from the
the same way whenever you think may walk odour and continue to head area
your dogs’ in odour or showing a hunt because he doesn’t want to • Proof dogs off Bags & Containers
change of behaviour. You need to get put up or he will stop hunting • Train with other department's
act natural or he will start watching altogether. If you pay the dog training aids
you. When your dog is in odour during training but don’t pay on the • Have different people set up
you should be able to continue, street you are confusing your dog, problems.
tap things, etc... And your dog telling him these two activities are There are 4 basic patterns, those
shouldn’t pay attention to you. He different. No reward on the street being the on/off lead detail & on/
should work to source, respond to will discourage your dog and his off lead scan. All must be taught if
it and stay with it no matter what enthusiasm will diminish. The use you only use one or two your dog
distractions. Obedience to odour. of a well-placed variable reward will not perform as well on the
Issues with dogs watching their for both training and street will other two.
handlers are caused by patterns improve your dog’s hunt and desire
or behaviours the handler creates, on the street tenfold. Now that we Patterns
which are picked up on by the dog. know you can reward your dog in
real-time both in training and on Walking backwards is just wrong!
Of major importance for the officer the street, we can talk about odour Institutional Search Patterns were
is the dog’s ability to differentiate and patterns. developed in the 1970s and
between Training vs. On-Duty. don’t apply now. For vehicles, the
There are many opinions on do Odour is made up of molecules. It common thought process was to
you reward on the street? Most has mass and weight both and as a
don’t reward in actual situations result, it will fall. According to Dr
such as a car search, reasoning Ken Furton, Florida International
that they can’t because they don’t University, the odour is also
know what is there yet or for safety sticky and follows whatever it is
reasons. If you don’t reward on the contained/hidden in, seeking the
street until you’re sure there are path of least resistance. By virtue
drugs there (Meaning 1. putting of odour following the path of least
the dog up, 2. searching to find resistance, in a closed environment
drugs and 3. rerun the dog 4. then such as a room or vehicle, it will
rewarding), what you’re saying is act in a vacuum and be pulled out.
you don’t trust your dog. Never let These are the instances when your
a defence attorney find out. dog will be the most productive.


start at the right front headlight and Fixed Ratio: 1 to 1: When imprinting and early stages of training
work your way around the vehicle. Variable Ratio: 5 to 1: Variable is the ratio that seems to work best
Nowhere is wind direction or speed
mentioned. This pattern is wrong. Fixed Ratio 1-1 Reward Schedule
Always start on longest downwind Fixed Interval
flank when searching outdoors.
Make the wind your friend. Used for Training/Imprinting Amount of Time you take to
Variable Ratio reward is always the same.
The Inverted V or upside-down W
pattern can be used but it should Variable Interval
fit the area you are searching for.
Don’t do the same routine every For Trained Dogs. The length of time when the reward
time you search a car, room, etc, They are rewarded 1 every 2,3,4, comes is always different. It could
use the wind to your advantage or 5 not the same pattern. come quick or wait for it. If they
outside and use the vacuums never wait they will respond. If no
created inside. Like all the other reward quickly, they will get up and
tools we train with, you must train move on. Must stay obedient to
the same way as you work. Using odour until released.
variable principles and schedules
will optimize your effectiveness. For multiple can also benefit you. You using your dog a lot on the street
the most effective search manner, should research and find which and keeping up on your QUALITY
the below schedule is tried and certification best fits you and is not training, certification should not be
true. so difficult that you need to train an issue and certifiers should ask to
for weeks just to pass it. Never train review your training records.
A proper Praise Off is very important just for the test.
to success. To some dogs, the praise Your dog must clearly understand
has equal value to the reward if Know the background of your that the odour drives the reward.
trained properly. Recall if trained certification official. They will be Well trained dogs will understand
properly can be good but you must the ones that are testifying on their job is to follow odour to the
change it up now and then with your behalf. Know the rules of the source then wait for the reward or
some dogs and reward at source certification before you start. Some the command from the handler.
to keep them obedient to odour so certifiers only allow the sit as the A well trained dog ignores other
they don’t just run to the handler passive response. Lockups and stimulus; he knows his job and
when they smell the odour. If you downs should be allowed. If you’re performs it willingly.
praise and pat the dog without
pulling him away it will cause SMSGT Kenneth Licklider has forty-four (44) years canine
aggression to the odour. You must experience, including seventeen (17) years serving in the
use the variable intervals when United States Air Force (U.S.A.F.) in the K9 career field. He
praising off as well as rewarding. is the owner/operator of Vohne Liche Kennels, Inc (VLK), a
Don’t always immediately go to the Service Disabled Veteran owned company headquartered
dog. in Denver, Indiana, with additional facilities in California
and Holland. VLK is widely known as the premier Private
Certifications are critical particularly Canine Training Facility and Detection Service Provider in the world and has
in light of Florida v. Harris. You only been providing superior service for the past twenty-seven (27) years.
need one certification per year but


Advantages of the Dual Purpose Police K9

Jerry Bradshaw, Training Director
Tarheel Canine Training, Inc. USA

In this article I will discuss the Advantages to DP K9s be necessary. Further, having a DP
fielding of canine teams by K9 capable of handler protection is
operational purpose and why it Flexibility a sure advantage for officer safety
makes sense to field canines with even if the main task of the K9 unit
a broad range of capabilities. I will In my experience, one of the main is drug detection as a routine traffic
make the distinction here among advantages of fielding DP K9s is the stop can surely turn violent.
single purpose patrol K9s (SPP) flexibility of one officer and one
that have as their essential purpose dog to respond to multiple calls for Deterrent Effect
the location of human suspects service whether they be tracking,
via building search, area search, apprehension or contraband K9 Officers who run a DP K9 will tell
and variable surface tracking, detection. Often a dog on the scene you that there is a large deterrent
and single-purpose detection K9s for one call can immediately be effect of having a K9 capable of
(SPD) that perform contraband repurposed for another call without performing apprehension functions
substance detection (narcotics, delay. For example, a vehicle stop on scene even when the initial
explosives or firearms) or possibly of a car leaving a surveilled drug purpose of the call was for a
human remains detection and house may in a moment turn into contraband sniff. In correctional
dual-purpose K9s (DP) which a jump and run tracking situation settings as well, the main function
combine the location and suspect for a fleeing felony subject. Having of a K9 may be for contraband
apprehension functions of the SPP a dog that can do both functions searches of drugs, tobacco, and
and the contraband detection of represents efficiency in that cell phones, however, the mere
the SPD. another separate call out would not presence of patrol trained K9s
during searches in correctional
The United States is a very diverse environments can pacify inmates. If
place when it comes to how we these abilities can reside in a single
employ police canines. Much trained K9 again the efficiency is
of the country is moving toward clear. Only one handler is needed
the use of DP K9s even in areas and it’s like 2 dogs are available
where there has been traditional simultaneously.
resistance to cross-training. In
the southeastern US, where my Cost-Effectiveness
company is located, one will find
overwhelmingly that we train and In this time of manpower shortages,
supply dogs for DP. However, K9 units are a significant force
there are areas in the northeast, multiplier (and therefore represent
west and southwest where there cost savings) because of how
is still resistance to cross-training efficiently they can solve location
patrol dogs in narcotics detection problems like tracks, building
(the most widely used detection searches or area searches versus
speciality) or explosives detection. tying up manpower using only
human officers to search for and
locate fleeing suspects at night.


A study out of Michigan found you think about the duplication of reflect the training of DP K9s versus
an almost 40 percentage point equipment, health screening costs SPP K9s. Many trainers that have
increase in the success rate of using of the initial purchase for two dogs been only responsible for training
K9s for locating hidden subjects rather than one, cost of buying 2 Patrol and Tracking functions are
during building searches compared dogs instead of one (this alone now faced with learning a new set
to officers searching without a K9. could be upwards of USD$7000), of skills to combine the functions.
That is a very significant increase training class attendance cost for In some areas of the country like
in success. Not only were the 2 dogs and the attendant costs New Jersey, for example, a handler
dogs more successful, but the K9 of removing the officer from the would take a dog through a 16
searches were completed much road for 2 classes rather than one, week SPP school and to dual certify,
more quickly than officers searching duplicated compensation costs attend another 16-week narcotics
without K9 assistance. for K9 care which is mandatory detection class resulting in 32
compensation in the USA per weeks of training – almost a year off
Efficiency at task represents cost dog, and mandatory total hours of the road - for both handler and K9.
savings. Further, when the same dog training per dog (at least 50% more Therefore, it is sometimes argued
can provide this efficiency during expensive for 2 dogs rather than that this introduces significant time
narcotic searches as well as human one) as training hours required by delay into the DP K9’s training
suspect searches it represents case law suggest that 16 hours per requirements.
further cost savings as only one K9 is a mandatory minimum. In an
dog had been trained rather than era of tight budgets and mounting This idea that classes must only
two. As I argue below there are pressure on agencies to do more be either Patrol functions or
efficiencies that can be captured by with fewer funds, DP K9s are a detection functions is just not true.
redesigning old training curricula to clear advantage. My business has been training DP
produce DP K9s rather than train K9s since 1996. Our curriculum
patrol and detection in separate Resistance to DP K9s currently allows for 16 weeks
long classes. of total training of both patrol
In law enforcement K9 training and detection functions. The
In order to approach the same there can be resistance to change in training covers patrol, detection,
functionality as a DP K9, one K9 training methodology due entirely variable surface tracking, evidence
officer would have to run to separate to tradition. The idea that “this is recovery, and obedience in one
single-purpose dogs, an SPP and an always how we’ve done it” can 16 week stretch. Existing classes
SPD. There are still many officers in provide inertia. If an agency decides that separate detection and patrol
the USA who have 2 K9s in their to move to DP K9s they have to are completely unnecessary. This
vehicle as this would suggest. If redesign their training curricula to is somewhat a vestige of the fact
that 15 - 20 years ago the kinds
of dogs going into patrol training
were primarily defensive dogs with
perhaps not enough prey drive for
detection functions and high prey
dogs for detection training. Thus
two different training approaches
were perhaps more justifiable. In
the present day environment with
more drive balanced dogs, there
is absolutely no reason not to train
both patrol functions and detection
functions simultaneously. Modern
motivational training methods


allow us to do more training with is a “jack of all trades and a master assertion, but if you deconstruct it
less pressure and thus we can of none.” The idea is that any given further one could look at an SPP K9
teach the dogs more in a day than K9 will excel at either Patrol or and make the argument that some
we could in the past, without the Detection but not be equally good of these dogs are better at building
risk of overstressing the dogs. Most at both. There is some truth in this search than they are at tracking, or
private vendors of police dogs in
the USA are training dual-purpose
dogs in all areas of patrol and
detection in a single class lasting
12-16 weeks. The only classes still
separating patrol and detection
exist in government-run agency
or academy classes. The private
sector has to adapt efficiencies
to keep costs down and remain
competitive while the government
faces less such pressure to be cost-
effective and even less pressure to
be time effective.

Some trainers who argue against
cross-training disciplines of patrol
and detection will argue that if you
create DP K9s you have a dog that


that they are better at area search functions. The real benchmark is a typical SPD K9. If so combining
than tracking, some are better whether the DP K9 will pass the these functions should be no issue.
at obedience than apprehension same patrol testing as an SPP K9, The DP K9s can and do pass these
work, yet we still combine these and the same detection testing as tests with alacrity.


For specialized applications like SWAT or Explosives Detection in continuous use environments like
airports, there is certainly reason to continue to train and field specialized SPP and SPD K9s. However,
in general patrol, corrections and military policing environments where flexibility, deterrence, and
cost-effectiveness is critical, DP K9s are clearly the future.

Internationally, I see a wider resistance to training DP K9s. In places I have visited where large numbers
of high-quality K9s are not readily available or are too expensive currently to import, or where severe
import restrictions exist, it is somewhat harder to find all the qualities of the DP K9 in a single dog. It
is my opinion that governments have a critical role in the future of K9s in policing. The importation
restrictions of high-quality K9s for police and military use often get caught up in existing restrictions
on imports of all domestic dogs for extremely outdated fears of importing canine diseases or the role
of imported dogs in canine overpopulation. The cost and bureaucracy of these restrictions are very
high and generally exist in countries that can ill afford to raise the prices of K9 imports. In countries
where heavy import restrictions exist the quality of the dogs available for police and military use
isconcomitantly low. These restrictions given the current state of veterinary medical technology are
burdensome and somewhat ridiculous and should be relaxed. Further, governments should relax
restrictions on organized protection training and even encourage civilian protection dog sports such
as IPG, Ring Sport and PSA which are the proving grounds for breeding stock of DP K9 candidates so
more quality canine candidates can be bred domestically. These are two things that could be done

With modern-day genetics and breeding quality of potential police dogs, there is in my opinion no
reason not to take advantage of the training technique that allows us to create DP K9s. It is time to
set aside the inertia of old training paradigms and streamline training classes to leverage the current
training technology and K9 quality currently available.

Jerry Bradshaw is Training Director & President of Tarheel Canine Training, Inc. in Sanford,
North Carolina. Jerry is the co-founder of The Protection Sports Association as well as a
founding director and evaluator of the National Tactical Police Dog Association known as
NTPDA. Jerry has taught seminars to the US Military (USAF, US Army, and Special Operations)
in South Korea, Germany, Alaska, and lower 48 states regularly for the past 10 years. He has
also taught competition seminars world over. Jerry has given over 120 seminars to police,
military, and competition audiences in his career, as well as written over 60 professional
articles in his field. Jerry has written multiple technical articles on diverse subjects about Working Dogs, and as
well as written a book, Controlled Aggression, which is rapidly becoming the standard text for understanding the
fundamentals of canine aggression training for police service, personal protection, and competitive dog sports.


The Explosive Detection K9, 2020

M. Herstik, International K9, USA

The date known as 9-11, 2001 their vast resources to work, maxim they felt qualified them,
was an in famous marker in world developing effective protocols as a result of the industry quickly
history. It resulted in a paradigm based on applying and combining became inundated with various
shift that led to massive changes both science and better craft, and forms of unqualified training
in security protocols affecting the by learning from the qualified methods infused with anecdotal
entire international stage. Vast experience of others. misinformation. The politics,
resources were suddenly being personalities and personal agendas
dedicated to creating, developing, Since that date more has been of this time still haunt us to this
and enhancing methodologies learned and developed and applied day. Despite all that, open-minded,
that would mitigate the now very than all the years up until that date qualified professional trainers
real threat of terror. The terror that in history. Let’s briefly examine and scientists, with international
had suddenly impacted everyday some of these developments and support, joined forces to develop
life across the world. It is natural what we have learned that has new advanced methods and
that the use of explosive detection made a difference. concepts in the application of
K9’s, (aka EDD’s), was one of the explosive detection K9’s, concepts
first called upon resources at the As soon as the call went out, a that greatly expanded their effective
forefront of this war against terror. plethora of trainers seeing an reality-based capabilities.
But as the application of these opportunity were quick to jump
specially trained K9’s expanded, it on the bandwagon. Unfortunately, We learned to apply proven
quickly became apparent that two many were unqualified. Every drug behavioural methods in our work
issues of notable concern surfaced. dog trainer proclaimed that an that helped produce a better more
“odour is an odour” and “scent reliable product. The application of
First, there was a limited frame of work is scent work”. That was the operant conditioning in the training
reference to draw upon within the process was relatively new. Many,
employment of EDD’s in existence. not all, learned to understand its
Experience and success in realistic necessity in the training process. It
high threat scenario were limited. provided a baseline that allowed
At that time only two countries us to expand to more advanced
possessed significant experience; capabilities. It was the combination
Britain had been using EDD’s for of science, craft and art that opened
years as a tool in dealing with the great new advanced capabilities.
IRA conflict. Israel had even far
more experience dealing with an Development of the
unprecedented level of horrific
terrorist attacks. But the US, who Standoff Alert
found themselves spearheading
the war on terror, had far less Newer basic training protocols
experience applying EDD’s in allowed the EDD to work in a more
large scale high threat application. effectually independent manner
Nonetheless, they quickly put from their handler. It was during
this period that the “Herstik Wall”
was born out of both necessity and


downrange to remote, directional commands.
The focused alert paved the way
discover and alert for a safer effective EDD standoff.

solidly on a device Early in 2004, I was asked to
perform a presentation of this
while personnel capability at Quantico Virginia
for representatives of the various
could direct branches of the US military. It was
hosted by the US Marine Corp
them from a safe war laboratory. The presentation
included a demonstration video
standoff position. of a K9 performing directed
remote distance roadside searches,
Up till now almost standoff alerts and recall. It was
immediately adopted into the
all EDD’s were Marine Corp program and used
extensively during the second Iraqi
worked on a war. The remote or long-distance
directed search, incorporating safe
short leash in very standoff has been adopted and is
now SOP for many military entities
close proximity throughout the world.

of their handlers. The technology was being fast
developed to screen and detect
This practice was hazardous material as they passed
through security situations. This
and still is true, technology offered excellent
attributes. These devices offered
especially of dogs accuracy that not subject to
physical fatigue and relative ease
that were trained of operation with minimal training.

using a food

reward. At the

time most bomb

squads frowned

upon the very

idea of working an

explosive detection

urgency. At the time of a bloody canine off-leash.
second intifada in Israel, I found
myself tasked with directing a large The British had already been
scale EDD program. A program working dogs off-leash from
designed to mitigate the horrific relatively short standoff distances.
bombing attacks that were going The Israelis, working in very high
on. threat scenarios were able to send
their dogs up to 400 meters distant.
The Herstik Wall was very simple, But both had a problem.
quick and inexpensive to construct.
It enabled the efficient production At that time the standoff dogs were
of consistently well trained, alerting aggressively to the devices
focus alert, detection K9’s to be when they located them. Needless
generated promptly. The focused to say, this was not ideal. Now with a
independent alert allowed for focused alert they would encounter
the development of a safer type the target odour and freeze solidly
standoff deployment. It created a in position, pointing their noses
truly honest conditioned response and staring directly at the source
to the target odour, rather than a of the odour. They would hold that
co-dependent cue from a handler. position until released and could
be a recalled back to their handler.
This basic first step allowed for the They could be directed using audio
more advanced deployment of receivers attached to a special
the K9. Now they could be sent harness while the handler gave


Some even claimed the detection what the dog was hearing
K9 was facing obsolescence. But
they soon realized this was far and to be able to direct
from true. It was quickly realized
that the K9 is an unparalleled the dog with either remote
biological detector possessed
with great athletic mobility. It can verbal or other signals from
recognize the edge of a vapour
plume and follow its gradient to a distant and safe standoff
the source from across a football
stadium. No machine can do this. position. Two federal
The K9’s nose is the standard of
measure for accurately recognizing scientists, I worked with,
a target odour. No technology can
replace K9. When technology and Dr James Crichton Smith
the K9 are utilized in a properly
cohesive manner they can harden and Dr Edward Eisenstein,
a target greatly. This last point was
grasped and appreciated. It was developed an experimental
naturally employed in that manner;
machine-based technology + K9 concept of attaching a
= a hardening of the target.
biofeedback analyzer which
The next logical step was to then
literally combine technology with could determine patterns
the K9. Now that EDD’s were able to
work off-leash at remote distances of physiological patterns in
from their handlers we needed a
way to transmit commands from reaction to environmental
afar. Commands that could direct
the dogs right, left, forward, back, encounters. Heartbeat,
stop, etc.
breathing patterns, blood
The Israeli’s being talented
innovators designed special vests pressure, etc. could be
with small walkie talkies in a
pocket for the dogs to wear. This measured and observed
supported the ability to transmit
directional commands to the when encountering he target
K9 from a safe remote standoff
position. From that early concept, vapour of an IED. It was
they would soon be carrying
much more advanced technology. intended to quantify these
Cameras that could transmit back
pictures and sound to the handler, physiological patterns so they
along with audio receivers to direct
the dog. This enabled handler to could be read as precursors
see what the dog was seeing, hear
to the formal recognition of

target odour. These concepts

were submitted to the US very closely together. There is a
very close co-dependency with
government. the handler directing the dog
in a tight constrictive detailed
Food Reward v/s Object, manner, rather than encouraging
a more independent form of self-
(Toy) Reward Dogs discovery. “Self-discovery” where
the dog independently moves out
Food reward is one of the earliest away from the seeking the target
methods used for training detection odour on his own. This type of
dogs. It is a simple concept, food reinforcement makes the dogs
associate a food reward, the trained in this manner unsuitable
primary reinforcement, with the for advanced forms of work i.e.,
target odour which is the secondary directed standoff. One US Federal
reinforcement. Unlike high drive agency, the ATF, fully committed
toy reward dogs, candidates for this its K9 training resources to this
type of training are easily found as method early on. As a result, to
the qualifications are much laxer. their commitment to this form of
While this method does work on training, they have promoted this
an elementary level, it comes with method as superior. Despite this
serious limitations. The nature of highly anecdotal claim, the reality
this system is such that the dogs and
the handlers are bound to working


is that this system is archaic and Personnel Detection are generally little more than
offers no advantages. The ATF is psychological deterrents. Yet
committed to this perspective as it So what have we learned/ despite all these solid field-proven
is tied to their significant funding. developed in that period? It seems training-advanced operational
It is too complicated for them to that the playing field of skills and methods, are accessible to
change and update all their assets capabilities have expanded greatly professional entities.
at this point. since 9-11. As a result, so has the
variance ineffective capabilities In Israel, I once stood next to a
A branch of the US State Department and methods. While some entities police superintendent in front of
known as the ATA, (Anti-Terrorism in some countries have soared members of the Knesset. It was
Assistance program), is responsible ahead operationally, others are during the period of frequent
for offering anti-terrorism support functioning at the older time-worn horrific bombings. We were
to countries around the world. operational levels. speaking to the financial people
The ATF is contracted with the who were deciding whether to
ATA. The ATA when called upon The commercially inspired anecdote fund an EDD project. They were
can only offer training support for is often presented as science to hesitating as bureaucrats always do.
EDD’s through the ATF. That means selling a method or a product. The police superintendent became
that the food reward method they We see this in the promotion of impatient. He stood up and sternly
use is propagated internationally. products; pseudo scent training scolded them saying, “Your job
aids that make claims they are is to juggle numbers, my job is to
No aspect of the military within the better to use than actual explosive keep people alive. Do not obstruct
U.S. chooses to use this method. material. Terms such as, “Science- my job!”
Despite the fact the ATF provides based training”, “Cognition based
these dogs and their training to training”, have recently become To implement and update these
law enforcement at no charge, the mere promotional branding tools capabilities as needed it requires
vast majority of police departments for trainers to re-invent themselves. the open-minded support of people
decline and prefer to pay significant Each re-inventing the wheel yet in power, the administrators, the
sums of money for toy reward/prey rarely improving it. Within the decision-makers, those who can
based high drive dogs and training industry, the existing balance of cut through the bureaucracy and
rather than low drive food trained professionalism and commercialism obstructionists and make things
dogs. has become slanted toward the happen so lives may be saved.
This has greatly contributed to the One champion within a system can
limited effectiveness and capability Large scale international companies improve an entire system.
of EDD teams in certain countries. providing EDD security teams

Mike Herstik is a Detection SME instructor for both law enforcement and military, specializing
in K9 bomb detection. His background includes having trained the lead K9 trainers for
the U.S. Navy SEALS, U.S. Army Rangers, IDF Oketz unit, LAPD Bomb Squad, LASD, and
Israeli National and Border Police. He has written multiple articles for leading publications
and conducted specialized courses, lectures and workshops for Police, Military and Law
Enforcements throughout the world.


Police Dogs in the Netherlands

Adee Schoon and Karin Ekkelkamp

Introduction their handler and be attentive to also use their noses when deployed
all their cues and signals. They to follow fresh perpetrator tracks
The Dutch National Police uses should almost function as one. or to locate people or items that
dogs for two main purposes: their On the other hand, to be a good have been dropped or hidden
capacity to bite, and their capacity detection dog, the dog should only recently, but the bulk of their work
to smell. In this overview, these will follow his nose. His handler can involves being obedient to their
be described briefly, and emphasis direct where to search, but not handler, protecting him, and being
will be placed on what we think where to find. This is sometimes fearless in approaching (and if
makes our dogs perform the way described as ‘being obedient to necessary biting) people who may
they do. odour’. We consider patrol work be behaving aggressively.
and detection work at the level that
The Dutch police are organized we try to achieve as incompatible – SWAT dogs
into 10 regional forces that each at least for the majority of dogs and
have their patrol dog unit, 6 SWAT handlers. The 12 SWAT teams mainly use
regions that each have two SWAT dogs to gain a tactical advantage.
teams with SWAT dogs. Besides Dogs that Bite The dogs are part of the teams and
these regional forces, there is an know the team members. They
11th nationwide unit that offers Patrol dogs are part of the training routines
speciality services. In this unit, and know their task. They are
there are two subdivisions that use There are about 350 patrol dogs selected for their calmness, their
speciality dogs: the Canine Unit in the Netherlands. These dogs capacity to remain silent and are
that trains and deploys different are usually bought when they trained to be extremely persistent
detection specialities as well as have already been trained, but the in their bite. Usually, dogs that
tracking/trailing/SAR dogs, and the possibilities of training dogs under have already received a significant
Special Interventions team that direct police supervision are being amount of training are bought and
train dogs for specific purposes that investigated. Each dog works with trained further by the SWAT canine
will not be discussed in this paper. a single handler. The patrol dog instructors, who then match the
teams have their local instructors dog to a SWAT team member.
Detection dogs used in prisons, who supervise the maintenance
military police, customs, and training, and the teams are certified SWAT dogs have to operate with the
harbour police generally all meet every two years. Currently, there SWAT team. This means sometimes
the same standards as the Canine is a change in the certification waiting patiently, silently, for hours,
Unit dogs. They are trained and system underway where dogs are until the moment arrives for activity:
certified to the same national being evaluated every 6 months in entering a building – which may
standard. The dogs are all single varying realistic test situations. involve explosives or other noise -
purpose, and detection dogs are and arresting a suspect. Sending a
not trained as patrol dogs. The Dutch patrol dogs are mostly single dog in first creates confusion and
driving philosophy is that to be a purpose, and they are seen as an activity, and so the SWAT team
good patrol dog, the dog should effective weapon that can only be gains precious time to evaluate the
work in close connection with used in cases where the police are situation and act efficiently.
mandated to use violence. They


Dogs that Smell and contribute to innovation and the increasing population density
education. After certification, and the urbanization of the
The Canine Unit: The Canine new handlers are supervised by a Netherlands, their job has changed
Unit of the Dutch police is the mentor (an experienced handler) significantly from what it originally
centre in the Netherlands that to gain operational experience. was. Where in many countries
deploys different types of detection there is a debate between ‘ground
and tracking dogs, and employs The centre houses the office that disturbance tracking dogs’ and
around 90 people – management, supervises all the certification ‘human scent trailing dogs’, the
kennel, instructors, handlers and of patrol, SWAT and detection/ Dutch police take a practical
administrative / support staff. tracking dogs for the police, approach. Odour trails are always a
customs, prison services, harbour combination of ground disturbance
Handlers are selected by the police and military police. The (immediate release of volatiles
centre based on their mindsets, centre is responsible for innovation combined with a gradual increase
capabilities and capacity to learn. in training, in developing new and then decrease of volatiles due
They are trained at the centre on disciplines, and for the education of to biological processes resulting
theoretical and practical aspects handlers. They also assist in police from the disturbed equilibrium)
of detection dog work. Once training of crime scene officers to and the scent left by the person
operational, they usually have 2 educate them on the possibilities (deposited directly through the
operational dogs and work from and limitations of the use of dogs. shoes or from the odour plume in
home where they have their dogs And finally, the centre also has the wake of the person). Instead of
with them. This ensures an efficient kennel facilities for dogs on trial, debating whether a dog is supposed
deployment and allows the handers for dogs in training, and boarding to follow footstep by footstep,
to bond well with their dog. They when a handler is on holiday. or follow the fringe, the dogs are
have scheduled supervised training allowed to develop their technique
with instructors, the amount of The centre was set up in 1919 and the training guides them in
training is dependent on the type and has just celebrated their this. By introducing hard surface
of dog they have. Besides this 100th anniversary with a seminar. tracking early on in the training,
supervised training, handlers have It endeavours to maintain an the focus of the dog naturally goes
their training material available and international network of police towards the human scent on the
are encouraged to train as much agencies, universities and research track and the pace is slow enough
as they can, with other handlers if institutes, and canine schools to discriminate between tracks.
possible. They all have a van that is to stay updated on new ideas, By staying away from the typical
completely rigged for the comfort techniques and technology, and to ‘runner’ setup in man trailing,
of the dog and allows for the safe share this information with others, the focus remains on the ground
and secure transport of training as with this publication. Through where the person walked instead
material. the years, the number of disciplines of air scenting directly to where the
the dogs are trained in has grown. runner is waiting, and so the track
Potential dogs are screened at the A brief description of the different is followed pretty closely and items
centre by instructors and taken disciplines is given below, as they dropped along the way are found.
into training. When the training were developed in time. Special
is almost complete, the dog is emphasis will be placed on points All in all, the dogs are trained to
matched with a future handler, that distinguish the way the Dutch track on soft and hard surfaces,
and the instructor continues to approach each discipline. to air scent missing people and
train them as a team until they objects, and to fine-search for
are certified. Besides this initial Human Scent/Tracking small articles. They indicate small
training, instructors also supervise articles in searching or on the track
maintenance training, participate This type of dog was the start of passively, but when air scenting and
in certification and quality control, the Canine Unit in 1919. With


out of sight of their handler they will buddy has the task to monitor and house and warehouse searches,
bark as an indication. They can be direct the search from a distance. vehicle searches, and outdoor
deployed on a track with a known searches. Often dogs indicate spots
starting point, or they can locate a Drug Detection Dogs that would have gone unnoticed
fresh track in a perimeter around by human searchers since there is
a crime scene, or follow a specific The Netherlands is known an increasing trend in concealed
track based on a scented object. internationally as a permissive compartments in vehicles, houses
country with regards to drugs, but and warehouses. Customs and
Explosives, Firearms and there are many drug dogs active prison services train a lot of their
in the police, customs and prison dogs to perform people screening
Ammunition Detection services. The focus of the training as well, the police usually does
is on ‘hard drugs’ and precursors, not, but all dogs have a passive
Dogs especially on those with little odour indication.
since that teaches the dogs to work
The Dutch version of the ‘bomb’ intensely and slowly. Human Remains/Blood
dog began in the eighties of the
last century. The Dutch training The dogs work independently and Detection Dogs
system focusses on first training usually off leash depending on
the dogs on a group of explosive the environment and the type of The Dutch police started training
parent components that are kept as search. The police conduct many dogs on human remains in the
pure as possible and then training nineties of the last century. Training
them to generalize this by having dogs to do this requires careful
multiple products that contain thought because of the legal and
one or more of these parent ethical issues surrounding what may
components. Besides being trained be done with human remains. In
on explosives, Dutch dogs are some countries, this means dogs are
also trained to detect firearms and trained on surrogates such as pigs
cartridge cases. In training, we pay or commercially available training
attention to emerging threats and aids. Since scientific research
home-made explosives by training has shown that such training
with our bomb disposal team. aids have significantly different
odourants compared to human
Dogs are trained to work remains, the Dutch train dogs on
independently, off-leash, with the human remains from donors who
handler directing dogs to spots they specifically donate their bodies for
have not searched well enough. The decomposition research.
dogs perform passive indications.
Some dogs are also trained to
conduct searches on objects that
they are directed to with a laser.
Dutch dogs are not trained for
people screening, but are used
for preventive sweeps, to examine
suspicious objects/cars, conduct
(house) searches for firearms, and
can be deployed in bomb threats.
Each handler has two bomb dogs,
and at major deployments, a
‘buddy system’ is used where the


Human remains and blood change to that of the instruments used Currency Detection Dogs
in odour with age so care has to be for the analysis of the samples – if
taken to vary the age of the material the dogs are not sensitive enough, Crime needs funding. Since banks
and ageing conditions. Dogs are using a dog will lead to missed monitor and report large money
either trained for human remains – arson cases; but if the dog is too transfers, many crimes involve
these dogs are usually deployed to sensitive, the instruments will not cash. Large amounts are stashed
search larger areas – or for blood find ignitable liquids in the samples away and if not found, crimes
detection – this requires very slow, taken at the indication of the dog, may be hard to prove and even
intensive sniffing to find residue leading to frustration with dogs when punished, criminals can
that human eyes cannot see. These ‘not performing correctly’. In the carry on soon after completing
dogs too work independently Netherlands, this has led to close their sentence. Currency dogs are
and usually off-leash, but can be communication between the arson of incredible value in detecting
directed to search specific spots by detection dog group and the crime money stashes.
the handlers. lab arson department.
The combination of paper, ink and
Arson Detection Dogs Search and Rescue Dogs printing technique gives currency a
unique odour profile that dogs can
Dogs trained in this particular The Dutch police search and rescue easily learn to detect. The training
discipline do not really detect arson dogs are part of the National Urban involves detecting new and used
but detect ignitable liquids that can Search And Rescue teams set up bills and focuses on training in
be used to commit arson. Since in the early years of this century. many environments and physical
they are usually deployed after a This is a specialist team consisting conditions. Money is often stashed
fire, the dogs have to be particularly of many disciplines and is tasked to in hidden compartments or under
hardy, and they have to be able to offer help after a disaster to save the double floors/walls in vehicles,
work at distances from the handler lives of people and animals whilst houses and warehouses, or is
when the remains of buildings are possible, both in the Netherlands even buried. A dog’s indication
structurally unsound. and abroad. Internationally can prompt the search team to
they follow the guidelines and examine the location more closely.
In this discipline, the Netherlands certification standards set by Even the most ingenious of hides
uses the dogs as intelligent samplers. INSARAG (International Search do not prevent volatiles escaping,
Where the dogs indicate, samples and Rescue Advisory Group), a UN to which the dogs respond. For
are taken by forensic officers. These organisation. the dog, there is no difference
samples are investigated in police between locating 100 bills of 5
crime laboratories using techniques The police SAR teams train with Euro or 100 bills of 500 euro, since
such as GS/MS. The results from civilian SAR teams that have the available odour depends on
this analysis are the achieved the same national level the size of the surface area, but for
through a certification process. the investigation, it makes a huge
‘evidence’ that is used to confirm This allows the Dutch police to difference. Millions have been
a suspicion of arson, and this is the use a wider group of teams for found by dogs!
evidence that is presented in court. rescues that do not have a criminal
The dogs are a means to sample component – a drunk person who Sexual Assault Dogs
more quickly, and time has proven never came home from the pub,
that this increases the efficiency of an older person with dementia Sexual assault dogs are trained
the investigation since samples were who has gone missing. Cases with to detect the odour of human
taken based on the dogs often lead criminal components (suspicion of semen and are deployed in sexual
to usable evidence. The sensitivity abduction, sexual crimes) are done crimes. This discipline is young,
of the dogs must be comparable solely by police teams. only 5 years old, but of increasing


importance. Dogs are used as the capabilities of the trained dogs, presented on a vertical search
‘intelligent samplers’, leading and this cooperation continues to board. Outdoors the dogs can
forensic officers more quickly and improve both the dogs and the indicate semen spots that could
efficiently to places and objects that testing procedures. not be found otherwise – the only
are contaminated with semen. The other way to locate biological traces
forensic officers may take samples, Dogs trained to detect semen have in such environments is the use of
or collect the material indicated by to work slowly and systematically, forensic lights, which is impractical.
the dogs, and this is later investigated taking direction from the handler Indoors, and on textiles, they are
using forensic light, presumptive where to search but yet work more efficient and more sensitive
tests and/or DNA analysis. This independently. They are trained than forensic light – forensic light is
discipline was developed using to perform outdoor and indoor limited when surfaces themselves
input from university students searches, vehicle searches, and reflect light or on dark and printed
who systematically compared to investigate textile (clothing, surfaces.
forensic testing procedures with bedsheets, towels etc.) that is


There is a global change in the way we approach animals. Their welfare is becoming increasingly important:
training, housing and using animals is the focus of public debate. This has changed how we train and deploy
our dogs. For police dogs, but in particular, for detection dogs, they must enjoy what they do – there is no
way to ‘force’ a dog into using their nose to find things that are of no interest to them. We select healthy dogs
that have great energy and focus, a natural tendency to use their noses, and great perseverance when on task.
By giving them a job that they enjoy, keeping them fit so they can perform at the level of the Olympics, and
humanely training them, we offer these high energy dogs an interesting life that serves their welfare more than
being an under-stimulated household pet.

Dogs have incredible potential. By understanding their learning skills and cognitive capabilities, we will be
able to improve our training and figure out new ways in which we can work together with them to serve the
communities we serve as police. Identify new targets they can help us locate. To achieve this, we need to work
together with animal behaviour specialists, veterinarians, chemists and forensic departments and laboratories.
And we need to share our knowledge and experience internationally, so we can learn from each other.


Dr Adee Schoon has worked with Dutch police detection dogs since 1991. Her research has been published
in scientific journals and she is a regular speaker at scientific conferences and handler seminars.

Karin Ekkelkamp has been with the Netherland National Police since 1981. She became Chief Operations
Officer responsible for the detection of dog deployment in 2013.


Appropriate Correction Command in
K9 Training

Sudhakar Natarajan, DIG (Vet), Indo Tibetan Border Police

Introduction but is usually

It is a universally accepted fact sub-optimally
that appropriate type, intensity,
timing and duration of correction utilised by
command during dog training
is the bedrock on which the the handler in
edifice of professional positive
reinforcement training stands. preference to
Improperly or untimely correction
of the dog with a verbal, visual or other harsher
physical command can not only
delay the laid down time-frame of correction
the training schedule of the dog but
can also cause irreparable response methods.
aberrations in the dog leading to
its relegation from the training Verbal
programme. This paper will delve
into this important but often correction is the
ignored aspect of dog training.
most effective
New dogs during training will
sometimes fail to obey commands. of all correction
This is a given. The theory of how to
correct a dog is the most complex c o m m a n d s Speaking “sweet nothing” to the dog during some “free time”
and pivotal part of dog training.
Half the battle is won if the trainer since it can his cool but growls like a true leader,
knows how and when to administer mould the responses of the dog with complete composure and
appropriate correction, but sadly and at the same time ensure that mental stability, with unwavering
this is the least appreciated facet of the dog realises that the handler is confidence that his corrective
dog training. his ‘pack leader’. Until and unless growl will have the desired effect
the handler asserts his hierarchical on his ‘pack junior’. This natural
The correct method used to make seniority over his dog, by using pecking order is to be mimicked by
the dog obey the command of the ‘soft’ methods, the dog training will the handler if quick and effective
handler is described below-: be imperfect. The ‘soft’ methods to training is to be imparted to police
assert his rank over the dog is the dogs. While administering a Verbal
Verbal correction consist of voice same as is adopted by the ‘mother reprimand to the dog the decibel
correction commands like – dog’ when she gives a warning level of his voice should be stoic
Chodoo (leave it). No, and Bahut growl to her pups when they get and unperturbed. Repeating of the
Kharab. Verbal correction is by too naughty. corrective command like ‘bahut
far the most preferred method
It has been observed that some kharab’ or ‘no’ more than once till
handlers use different tones and the dog obeys, is wrong.

amplitude in the voice for the same Repeating the command for the
command, which confuses the same action dilutes the authority
dog. The verbal correction should and validity of that command.
be firm, business-like and should By this you are sending a subtle
not reflect the anger or impatience but clear message to the dog that
of the handler. While administering he can wait till the command is
corrections the handler should repeated in a harsher tone and
remain unflustered. Even in nature the level of anger in the voice
the top-dog when he puts an increases to a particular degree
underling in his place does not lose


before the dog can correct itself. It cent per cent sure that the dog ITBP Lady Vet Officer Dy Comdt Ritu
has been observed by experience has completely understood the training Bhageera, a Belgian Shepherd
that successful dog training can command. Many a time it has been
be accomplished only if every seen in police dog training, that • Grade two: Voice correction
handler is made to understand the handler is in a hurry and starts followed by a leash jerk (during
that corrective command should giving the corrective command mobile manoeuvres). In static
be obeyed in the first instance even though the dog has not fully manoeuvres, the handler will
itself. I have devised a thumb rule understood the initial obedience take a step forward.
in the correct administration of command in the first place.
the corrective command in the • Grade three: Voice correction
following sequence I would like to quote a real-life
example. A handler gave the with leash jerk, simultaneously
• Refusal by the dog to obey the command of ‘sit’ command to
command. his dog. The dog failed to obey. (when mobile). In static
The handler started yelling the
• Immediately administer a corrective command and even then manoeuvres, the handler
corrective command in a uniform the dog failed to obey. The handler
voice like ‘bahut kharab’or ‘no’. got angry and started shouting at gives voice correction and
the dog and administered a series
• wait for exactly 02 seconds of rapid-fire corrective command simultaneously physically
‘bahut kharab’. The dog was
• if the dog still does not obey, petrified and tucked its tail between corrects the positive of the dog.
gently jerk the leash (or take his legs and started whimpering.
one step forward if it is a signal From that time whenever the dog • It has been seen from experience
obedience command) was given the ‘sit’ command, it that if the dog is trained, adhering
used to have an unknown fear in to all the laid down procedures
• if the dog obeys, administer a pat its eyes. The problem was referred of positive reinforcement
or verbal praise. back to the officer. The officer philosophy, then more often
finally diagnosed that the dog did than not, the dog will correct
To enhance positive reinforcement not fully understand the meaning of itself in the first grade itself. In
it has been observed that it would the ‘sit’ command. It can therefore rare cases, grade two correction
be in the scheme of things to always be stated that there is no meaning would be used. And if and only
end the session on a successful in giving the corrective command if if the grade two fails then the
note. the dog does not fully comprehend grade three correction should
the initial command in the first be adopted. Some handlers
The above sequence describes place. It is again emphasised due to impatience, administer
the right way to use the corrective through this paper, that it should the grade two or grade three
command during the initial stages be ensured that the dog fully command without trying out
of training. Always keep in mind understands the command before
that if the handler has half-baked correction is given. Ignoring this
knowledge about this then the would spoil the dog and make it
problem will increase in geometric either too stubborn or a ‘confused
proportion and a day will come coward’.
when the dog will fail to obey grade-I
correction. It can be postulated, I have graded the corrective
with the benefit of hindsight, command into three grades:
that leash-jerk correction should
always be after the disobedience • Grade one: Voice correction
of verbal correction and not before alone
it, this is the thumb rule. The other
important part of voice correction
is that the handler should first be


the lesser intensity corrective ITBP Crack K9 Team secures India Gate on Republic Day Parade
command. This makes the dog
difficult to correct at lower • Joyously comes to the handler A watchful eye has to be kept on
grades, and it attains a tolerance when called. the threshold level of each dog.
to less corrective commands. It
delays the training of that dog then the level of correction It can be prophesied with a
and has a detrimental effect on is appropriate. If the above fair measure of confidence that
the professional efficiency of the behaviour is not shown by the dog the above advances in training
dog. immediately after correction, then techniques will lead to enhanced
the correction level is higher than training standards in dog training
• The pertinent question that now the tolerance threshold of the dog. schools of security forces.
comes up is that how much
correction is too much? for this
the temperament of the dog
has to be studied before the
start of training. For ‘soft’ dogs
a higher level of correction can
cause permanent damage to the
handler-dog relationship. My
experience supports the theory
that if your dog can:

• Chase the ball immediately after
correction command.

• Show interest in food reward
immediately after correction


Do not confuse love and respect. A dog can love you but need not respect you as a pack leader. The handler
needs to be a ‘pack leader’ or the ‘top dog’ to his dog to elicit both love and respect. A dog will obey your
corrective command only if he respects you. In conclusion, it can be said that proper use of corrective
command will make the training more efficient and ensure that both the dog and handler maintain their
capability. Dogs can be used as a ‘force multiplier’ in security forces only if proper levels of corrective
commands are used during initial training.

Dr. Sudhakar Natarajan is a graduate of veterinary and
animal science and postgraduate in veterinary surgery and
radiology. He has previously commanded the National
Training Centre for Dogs of the ITBP and has been involved
in the training of Police Service K9s for diverse roles. He is
a prolific writer and has earlier authored many articles for
leading papers and professional publications.


Understanding Behaviour and Cognitive
Learning in Police Service K9s

Shirin Merchant

Around the world, police service dog’s behaviours and tapped into naturally enjoy retrieving because
K9s are making a difference - their dogs’ cognitive abilities, had all training for this purpose is based
from dogs that sniff out smuggled happy working dogs that excelled on a strong foundation of a retrieve.
wildlife, narcotics and explosives at their jobs. I have trained a Rottweiler for the
to even dogs that bring down job but I must be honest that whilst
terrorists. Canine behaviour is an extensive she trained to completion, she did
topic, but police K9 handlers and not enjoy the work as much as the
Being a K9 handler is an exciting trainers just need to understand Labradors did and would often play
profession. And every working dog the simple foundations of mischief during a command.
handler I have ever met or worked canine behaviour to help them
with wants their dog to perform troubleshoot problems in training When a dog enjoys the work it
at an optimum level at all times. and improve working performance. does it makes a difference to the
When most people train working performance levels. Most working
dogs, they spend time learning and We do know that behaviours are dog handlers need to differentiate
applying training theory to bring the influenced in two main ways - between a dog that is executing a
best out of their dogs. But the wise innate behaviours and learned task out of compulsion and a dog
trainers and dog handlers know behaviours. that is enjoying the task.
that before training is attempted,
consideration should be given to Innate behaviours are those that a Genetic codes in dogs cannot be
learning as much as possible about dog is born with. The genes, the changed, we can train to control
dog behaviour and understanding breed, the ancestry all make a them or redirect behaviours, but it
the dog’s mind. difference here. What most people just makes good sense from a view
don’t realise is that this part is of time and money to start training
Most of the successful working fixed. You cannot change innate a breed that is predisposed to doing
police K9 teams around the world behaviours; which is why is it so that work from the start.
have built up a wealth of knowledge important to choose the dam and
on canine behaviour enabling them sire carefully and choose the right And then we look at learned
to work in harmony with their dogs, breed of dog for the right job. behaviours. These are behaviours
observing and comprehending the dog learns through the course
the various behaviour patterns, I have often seen breeds of dogs of life. These are behaviours we
encouraging and guiding desired completely unsuitable for the work can control to an extent as we can
behaviours and finding innovative they have been chosen for; working mould the experiences a dog has
ways to suppress or redirect with the dog’s breed makes it so through life.
unacceptable areas of behaviour. much easier to train the dog and
makes sense in terms of time and We typically think that learned
In my own experience when I have money invested. behaviours are important only
interacted with working dogs, I when we start formal training of the
have noticed that those trainers and For example, when I train Assistance dog but we need to keep in mind
handlers, who understood their Dogs for physically challenged that a pup starts learning from the
people, we prefer to use dogs that


time it is born. If we can influence to further behaviour changes and to conform can make a difference
those early experiences, we can we often see the pups in training later in how the dog works as an
change the way the dog will train becoming more disobedient, adult. Teenage dogs respond well
and work later in life. recall training levels drop and the in training with more playtime and
dog seems more interested in the motivation rather than rigid rules.
Starting with when the pup is yet environment than the handlers.
with the dam, ensuring that the And as the dog grows into an adult,
pups are brought up in an enriched At this point, most handlers and every experience it has will impact
environment- where the senses trainers prefer to use force to get the way it trains and works.
are stimulated, handling the pups the dogs to obey, but typically it will
daily and getting them accustomed lead to training levels of the dog We can and we should influence
to human scent and touch (right eventually degrading over a while. the learning our young police K9s
from the day they are born), giving have to ensure they turn out to
them objects of different tastes Understanding that the young be biddable, confident and happy
and textures to explore (from dog is going through physical and working dogs.
around the age of 3 weeks) and behavioural changes and working
even exposing them to measured with the dog, rather than forcing it When I have worked with service
amounts of stress through carefully dogs, the most common complaints
crafted exercises can ensure that
the pups grow up to be more
confident, easy to train, biddable
dogs in comparison with pups that
miss out on this vital learning early
in life.

And as the pups grow to about 6-8
weeks, it is imperative to socialise
them to the sights, sounds and
people of the world. I cannot stress
how important this is for working
dogs, as they need to be stable
and confident in any working
environment. We do know that
dogs that miss out on this crucial
learning grow up into nervous,
unconfident dogs. Needless to say,
those are characteristics that would
be undesirable in police working

We often describe dogs as shy
or bold but don’t realise early
influences play a strong role.

And when the young dog becomes
a teenager at around 7-9 months,
there is a hormonal change leading


in training often are about dogs that the commands, added an element Knowledge on understanding
are willfully disobedient, insolent, of fun into the heelwork exercise canine body language, being
losing interest in training, giving and motivated the dog using treats more aware of our body language
false identifications in sniffer dog and toys. Within minutes, you when training, comprehending
work or lagging in heelwork. could see the dog’s behaviour drives and motivators in dogs and
changing and it perked up and learning how to bond with a dog
When I watch the dogs work, often started walking happily next to the can make a world of a difference in
I can make out teams that are well handler. the performance levels of the team.
bonded in contrast to dog-human
teams that do not understand each Dog speak to us using their intrinsic Another dog that I worked with was
other, and that makes the difference language comprised of body routinely giving false identifications
in a dog that will work well under language cues such as tail wags, during explosive detection work.
duress and a dog that will fail. body postures, the carriage of the Watching the team at work, it was
ears, and of course vocalisation. apparent that the dog was confused
Understanding canine cognitive Understanding these subtle cues about when to give an alert and the
processes and behaviour can can help us improve on the levels handler was very nervous too.
aid in improved communication of training and performance.
and teamwork between dog and False identifications can happen
handler and better performance Training and fieldwork can be for a variety of reasons, a common
of the K9 team. Training a dog stressful for dog and human issue is the handler’s body language.
without understanding what drives sometimes; knowing the signs of Dogs excel at reading human body
his behaviours greatly reduces the stress in a dog can help us control language and this dog was reacting
likelihood of success. and reduce it thereby improving to the inadvertent signals of the
the team’s performance. trainer rather than the scent.
A couple of years ago, I was advising
a handler dog team that had a When stressed, a dog will carry Changing the handler’s mindset,
common problem in training - the out calming signals- intrinsic body making him more mindful of his
dog would lag during heelwork. language cues designed to reduce body language and removing
their stress levels and communicate his knowledge of scent location
The handler would yank on the to others that they are stressed. transformed the way he handled
leash and give firm commands the dog; he now had to start trusting
for the dog to pick up the pace. It Signs such as lip-licking, yawning, his dog rather than guide his dog, it
would work for a few seconds and walking slowly, sniffing of the made a positive difference in the
the dog would lag again. The whole ground, random itching, turning the outcome.
exercise was becoming increasingly head to the side, or barking could
frustrating for the handler, as he be signs that the dog is stressed out. Police dog handlers and trainers
did not understand what was going also need to know the signs
wrong. We often see these signs in training of fear, avoidance behaviours,
sessions or the field and attribute flight behaviours in dogs and the
When I explained that the harsh them to a dog being disobedient physiological changes that happen
commands and the abrupt body or insolent and typically use when a dog is in flight or fight
language of the handler were correction to get the dog to obey, mode.
causing the dog stress and as a way which inevitably leads to more
of alleviating the stress, the dog stress and high levels of cortisol. When a dog is frightened of
was lagging, the handler was taken something, its first option will
a back. A simple understanding of stress be flight behaviour; we often
in canines can help the handler confuse that with disobedience
The handler then transformed his reduce stress in levels in police K9s. and force the dog to confront his
approach – he changed the tone of


fears or discipline the dog, thereby occur off the training field, such are not the ultimate rewards- the
increasing fear and corresponding as kennel stressors, extremes in ultimate reward for the dog should
cortisol levels in the dog. temperature, noise sensitivity, be the handler and his relationship
aggression from other dogs, with the dog. Use the toys to play
Instead, removing the dog from unusual environments, etc., the games, praise the dog when treating
the situation immediately, allowing stress hormone cortisol is released; and ensure the handler is a part of
it time and distance to cope with and this can severely affect the level the reward and not just a dispenser
the fear, and helping the dog calm of training and learning in a dog. of rewards. When the dog views
down can change the way the dog Stressors must be identified and the handler’s interactions as a
responds to a similar situation in reduced when possible to ensure reward and has a strong bond with
future. A dog forced to confront that high cortisol levels do not the handler, it will obey happily for
its fears can eventually learn to use inhibit the dog’s cognitive abilities. a lifetime. Dogs, very much like
aggression to protect itself. humans, excel at what they enjoy
Since police dog training can be doing.
Aggression is another highly stressful for dogs and handlers, it
misunderstood behaviour among is advisable daily to carry out fun So next time you get stuck in
working dog trainers. We need activities that release endorphins training before you scold the
to keep in mind that no dog ever in dogs, which can help counteract dog, ask yourself- what is my dog
wakes up one day and decides cortisol levels in the body. understanding? What is my dog
to bite. There has to have been a trying to say? Sometimes listening
pattern of learning. Over a while, higher work to our canine partners can be the
efficiency will be seen in the dogs, answers we are looking for.
Knowing these behaviour patterns, because happy dogs make for
understanding their progression better workers. Delving deeper into canine
and learning how to redirect them cognitive processes and behaviour
can help in controlling handler We also need to consider dogs not and applying those concepts to
directed aggression in working as robots but as living creatures that the training process can decrease
police K9s. With most dogs that need playtime, relaxation time and training time, improve training
bite their handlers, trust-building social company. Handlers should techniques and can change the
exercises, forged through playtime spend time playing games that way we train and work with police
and bonding time can help repair build trust, a strong bond of respect K9s to ensure consistently high-
the relationship between human and weave faith into the framework performance levels.
and dog. of the human-canine partnership.

When dogs are fearful, aggressive And whilst using food and toys in
or stressed, either due to training training is great, trainers should
situations or even situations that ensure that the treats and the toys

Shirin Merchant is India’s pioneering canine trainer and behaviourist. She is the only person
in Asia to gain accreditation in Companion Dog Training and Behavioural Training with the
Kennel Club of England’s, KCAI - Kennel Club of England Accreditation Scheme for Dog trainers
and behaviourists. She is one of nine people in the world to have behaviour accreditation. In
2015, Shirin was awarded the prestigious International Commendation award for Trainer of
the Year by the Kennel Club of England. She was felicitated by the President of India at the
First Ladies Awards - for women who have transcended barriers.


Importance of Socialization and House
Manners in Dog Training

Sardari Lal, Ex DIG (Vet) BSF

Trained dogs are an asset for the with the dog he can prove an asset some say 30000 years back due to
Security Forces as helping police for the Force. He knows what to conflicting evidence. The proper
in detection of crimes of various apply when to apply and where to age of socialization is between 8
nature. Explosive trained dogs are apply i.e. time and mind. to 12 weeks but can be socialized
saving precious lives and property when adult but better to start at an
by timely detection of IEDs and One must have noticed that street early age.
bombs whereas narcotic dogs dogs start barking/ attacking/ and
are fighting the menace of drugs even biting whenever any animal, The relationship between handler
by timely detection of narcotic other dogs, vehicles enter into their and dog is the foundation of the
substances. Dogs have an acute territory or simply exhibit fear or bond of mutual trust and respect.
sense of smell, ultrasonic hearing flight on hearing unusual sounds This objective can be achieved by
power and better vision in dim of various types. To overcome this developing deep association with
light. Moreover, they have the to occur in the actual working a dog by nurturing through better
power of discrimination in dilutions scenario during the performance of care, grooming, feeding, timely
n high sensitivity. A dog is a time- operational duties and to make dog watering, playing and motivating (a
tested machine and very reliable behaves in a disciplined manner lot of praises, offering tidbits, tug of
one. There had been a huge cache while in the kennel, the role of war etc.). The running with the dog
of narcotic drugs and explosives socialization and house manners in the morning is also one of the
by the trained dogs. Trained dogs comes to play. motivating factors.
have been proved a deterrent for
the anti-national elements. There Socialization The reason for socializing the dog
had been a tremendous reduction to help him to be accustomed to
in theft, murder, extortion and The association of dog with the all kinds of sights, sounds and
kidnapping cases once crime human being is as old as human smells. A well-socialized dog is
detection dogs deployed in the civilization. In the beginning, well- adjusted and confident.
areas affected with such activities. the dogs were used for hunting Without socialization, the dog may
If dogs are properly bred, reared, and guarding purpose but later become fearful or aggressive and
socialized, selected, trained and on exploiting the extraordinary other behaviour issues. To make
regularly kept under practice, their qualities such as an acute sense the dog more faithful, happier and
efficiency in the respective field of smell, ultrasonic hearing power confident, the dog needs to be
is unquestionable. It is teamwork and better night vision, the man socialized throughout his life.
hence, selection of handler is used dogs as per his designs such
equally important. The handler as messenger dogs, guarding of vital Once the dog is allotted, the
who understands the psychology of installations, tracking of criminals, handler must call the dog by name
the dog such as behaviour including bomb detection, narcotic detection, i.e. name conditioning. The dog
communication, body gestures, Search and rescue operations etc. will response gradually. Next step
habits and how he communicates is getting the dog used to neck
The dogs were domesticated collar and leash. The collar should
12000-14000 years back but


neither too loose nor tight. Its itself after each meal, or whenever the digestive system. Make sure
fitness can be checked by inserting the urge arises so. Some dogs are that the diet changes are done
two fingers between the dog’s neck also having a habit of chewing the gradually. Environmental changes,
and collar. It is a tool to control dog shoes, blankets, sleeping board etc. such as a new house or even a
during training and all other outside kept in the kennel. change in the toileting surface for
activities. Handler to introduce the example from concrete to grass can
dog to various peoples, dogs, places To overcome this, the handler is affect your dog’s toileting routine.
and sounds especially firecrackers, required to sleep in the kennel for The dog if not properly house
vehicles, sirens, gunshots etc. to 10 to 15 days so that handler can trained, it may soil the training area
get the dog used to fear- triggering keep close watch over the dog. during the training session or when
experiences. Handler has to catch the dog in some display is going on.
the wrong act otherwise he will
The success of socializing dog not understand what wrong he has Some dogs also develop the habit
will depend on your patience, done. The young puppies and old of coprophagia i.e. eating of their
consistency and willingness. The dogs cannot hold bladder for a long excreta eliminated in the kennel
well-socialized dog is prerequisite time, hence need evacuation. If you leading to digestive disturbances.
before the start of training. notice the dog sniffing the ground, If this habit is continued, the
Unsocialized dogs are 580 times circling or showing uneasiness it dog loses interest in the job due
more likely to become aggressive, means he wants to relieve itself. to continuous health problems.
according to the Cummings School Health issues like some infections
of Veterinary Medicine. The Whenever dog has the urge of may cause frequent toileting in the
well-socialized dog will be bold, relieving you have to take out and house even if the dog is fully house
confident and will not be scared give the command ‘go toilet in trained. Ultimately, the objective
of other animals, dogs, places, clear and audible words. Give lots is achieved when the dog relieves
unusual sounds and will have a of praise when it relieves itself. It is itself outside and does not harm
happy and well-balanced life. your responsibility to take your dog anything in the kennel as well
outside when it needs to relieve as accepts the leadership of the
House Manners itself. The quicker you become handler.
an expert at reading your dog’s
Handler to teach a dog to get rid signals, the faster it will become Dr. Sardari Lal is a long time
off unwanted behaviours and to house trained. veteran in the field of police
be obedient and act politely in the dog training retired as DIG
kennel. If the dog has not been Never punish a dog for a mess it (Vet) BSF. He has been Chief
taught house manners when it was made, whether you saw it happen Instructor, National Training
with the breeder like toilet training, or not. Do not rub its nose in the Center for Dogs, BSF Academy
crate training etc. the handler has mess, hit, shout or punish it. The Tekanpur, (MP), Ex-Police
to house trained dog. It is based on dog will not understand that you Canine Operations Advisor,
play theory i.e. handler to motivate are upset at it for something it did United Nation Development
the dog for the desired behaviour in the past. If you do catch your Programme, Kabul,
with a lot of praise and play (rubber dog in the act, pick it up and take it Afghanistan.
ball and tug of war) with the dog. outside immediately. Being harsh or
In the beginning, the dog should punishing your dog for an accident
be on a leash at the time of kennel will only teach it that it shouldn’t
out. relieve itself around you.

The handler must understand a few Meal timings need to be fixed.
basic things that dog like to relieve Sudden changes in diet may upset


Use of Retired Dogs of Police as Therapy Dogs

for Emotional Support to Children with Special Needs,
Sick and Disabled Personnel

Pramod Kumar Chug, Consulting Director, Police K9 Cell,
Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India

Background dogs are not service dogs. Service Unique Advantages
dogs are trained to perform tasks
Therapy dogs are interactive dogs to ease their handlers’ disabilities, Studies of animal therapy have
trained to provide service and helping them to attain safety and shown repeatedly that exposure
comfort to people. These dogs are independence in an exclusive or to animals helps improve morale
trained and accustomed to bringing dedicated manner. and communication, bolster self-
joy to the lives of subjects (children esteem, calm anxiety – even
or patients) in need of a little extra Objective and Goals reduce blood pressure and heart
love. Research shows that children rate. According to 2017 research
with mental disabilities like autism, Use of the retired (cast and boarded from the University of Cambridge,
cerebral palsy or other neurological out) Police Service K9s (PSKs) children get more satisfaction from
disorders can benefit greatly from of Police and Law Enforcement relationships with their pets than
spending time with a therapy dog. agencies to provide ‘Dog Therapy with their brothers or sisters. While
Its calm presence, simple methods for Emotional Support’ for children some children with special needs
of communication, fondness can with special needs of any age with suffer from an identifiable disorder
engage the child constructively, mental and neurological disorders/ like autism or cerebral palsy or
breaking the monotony, boredom disabilities in terms of providing seizure disorder or mobility issues,
and depression producing positive them emotional support. Therapy many of them have multiple issues,
results in helping children on a dogs can also be used to give or a variety of mental health issues or
wide range of mental disorders comfort and affection to people uncommon neurological disorder,
and help the child to relax and who are sick, disabled or in a crisis for example, Down’s Syndrome,
communicate. by visiting at hospitals or their Fragile X, Apraxia, ADHD. They are
locations. extremely effective to ease anxiety
Concept or Philosophy in any environment including
Further, the goals of therapy dogs hospital settings, help children
Therapy dogs are interactive dogs are as under : who are anxious about learning to
trained to work for a Handler read, and for several other calming
to provide service and comfort • Improving motor skills and joint and esteem-building therapies for
to people. The presence of a mobility. special needs children and adults.
therapy dog can decrease anxiety Notwithstanding above, few unique
and provide a level of comfort • Improving gross motor and/or benefits are listed as under :
that enables children to work fine motor movement.
through a variety of challenging Best Friend Effect
issues including their mental • Progress self-esteem by
disabilities. Their responsibilities increasing verbal communication • While the needs of each child are
are to provide psychological or and developing social skills. unique, however, the common
physiological therapy to individuals thing about them is that these
other than their Handlers. It is • Increasing eagerness to partake children have few, if any, friends.
important to note that therapy in activities. Having a ‘Therapy Dog’ that

• Improving the willingness to


quickly bonds well with such Groundbreaking Concept of providing Healing Therapy through the
children closely is an opportunity Army Dogs at Asha School, Delhi Cantt for Special Need Children by
for the child to have a best friend
effect who loves and accepts Col PK Chug (Retd) during the year 2012.
them unconditionally.
to perform a trick or other sleeping with them and providing
Calming and Preventing Meltdowns command can be an incentive that constant comfort.
to communicate. In society
• Such Therapy Dogs provide or public, the child gets the Tracking
assistance to these children with opportunity or reason to talk
meltdowns by providing calming about their therapy dog with • Dogs are known to possess an
and comforting interactions other people. amazing nose and if the retired
through their Dog Handler. dog is a tracker dog, then the
For example, if the teacher or Assisting with Transitions task of tracking a lost child even
parent sees the child feeling brightens up from some of their
overwhelmed, they can have the • Few children who would interact belongings. Children suffering
intervention of therapy dog by initially with a therapy dog under from autism, often get lost if not
cuddling behaviour, snuggle with supervision may eventually monitored and such dogs can
the child, kissing to meltdown achieve confidence and trust assist in finding them quickly.
the situation especially when with dogs. Such children can
the child is crying or performing move on to have an independent Essential Requirements
repetitive behaviour. Often the therapy dog who is living with the
therapy dog intervening will child to extend greater benefits of Therapy Dogs for
either reduce the length of the in terms of trained skillset but
meltdown or even prevent it also deescalate a situation on Emotional Support
from occurring. The underlining round the clock basis.
significance lies that simple A therapy dog can be just about any
presence of such dogs provides Improving Sleeping Pattern dog , but there are some fundamental
comfort and emotional stability. requirements of therapy dogs.
• The interaction with therapy Since it is recommended to
Social Bridge dog improves sleeping and such involve retired/veteran PSKs for
children display more sound the purpose, therefore not all dogs
• Through the therapy dogs, sleep following interaction with would be suitable for the purpose.
the children unite and it plays a therapy dog. Further, if the Notwithstanding, most dogs may
an important social bridge to dog is staying round the clock found to be suitable to meet the
facilitate interaction with similar with the child, then it ensures basic requirements of a therapy
or normal children. that the child sleeps better at dog restricted to provide emotional
night because the therapy dog is support to children with special
Responsibility needs or sick and disabled persons

• Many such children enjoy
learning how to brush, feed,
and take care of such therapy
dogs. This allows them to be
responsible for something and
they can take pride in their
efforts as they learn important
life skills.


• For children who struggle with
verbal skills, asking the dog


Healing Therapy by Army Dogs at Asha School, Delhi Cantt enjoy to fit into someone’s
for Especially Abled Children. lap, love to rest their soft head
on the side of a bed or a knee
at hospitals. The perfect therapy and although dog therapy is are excellent in dog therapy.
pet is well-trained, well-socialized restricted to provide emotional Labradors, Golden Retrievers,
and genuinely loves people, support through these veteran Cocker Spaniels, Beagles are
however, these veteran dogs need dogs however the handler needs particularly more suited although
to be screened against the criteria to facilitate the interaction of German Shepherds can also be
listed below and those meeting subjects with the dog in a cordial, used for the purpose. The more
the requirements or those which calm way to make it a pleasant important aspect is that they
can be quickly modified to meet experience with a lasting positive are calm and gentle and can
the requirements should only be impression. appreciate people’s suffering.
employed for the purpose of dog
therapy: • Age: Age is no bar in dog Responsibilities of the Dog
therapy. Older dogs are generally
• The temperament of the dog is more cool and calm and with Handler
most critical and the dog should maturity, they become more
possess calm, friendly behaviour socialized and environmentally The Handler of such dogs also plays
and happy to be handled by stable having served in a variety an important role in facilitating the
many different people. of operational settings hence it is dog therapy. The following are
easy to handle them. the responsibilities of the handler
• Health is another aspect and which needs to be ensured:
dog should be healthy with up- • Size & Breed doesn’t matter.
to-date with its vaccinations The breed, size or type of dog • Ensure the safety of the children
and deworming. Review by is immaterial as far as emotional apart from the therapy dog’s
Veterinary Officer is essential. support is concerned. Any dog physical and mental health.
is which is friendly, forthcoming
• Training: The Handler must to interact with other people, • To prepare the retired/veteran
understand the requirements CAPF dog for the task. Only most
suited retired dogs be used for the
purpose. Any dog still showing
the signs of aggression, unsocial
being or not comfortable with
children must not be used for
the purpose.

• The Handler and Dog both are
vaccinated against ‘Rabies’.
The up-to-date vaccination
record of the dog with regards
to other diseases like distemper,
parvovirus and adenovirus
(hepatitis) would always be
carried by the Handler in his bag
as evidence of safety.

• At no time of the task, will the
Handler and dog be alone with
students and dog therapy be
provided only in presence of the


• The Handler would keep the the Handler will immediately • The Handler will ensure humane
safety of children as paramount remove the dog from the school care of the therapy dog,
at all times. The Handler’s and notify the concerned including any feeding, exercising
attention must be dedicated to officials. and clean, well-groomed, free
the dog and their interactions of injury or illness, and of the
with students and staff. The dog • The therapy dog must wear its temperament appropriate for
will always be under the direct dog vest and the Handler will working with children and others
control and supervision of the ensure that the dog is always on in the school.
Handler. The handler will be a 6-foot leash that is held by the
aware of the dog’s behaviour Handler, with a flat buckle collar • The Handler will take
at all times. If any changes or approved harness, inside and responsibility for educating staff
in behaviour occur that may outside the school for children and students, on the role of the
affect the safety of the children, with special needs. dog in extending such therapy.


The retired CAPF Dogs may be unfit for the specialised trade due to their old age and limited mobility however
cool and calm temperament and mature, environmental stable personality makes them perfect ‘Therapy Dogs
to extend Emotional Support’ to children with special needs, sick and disabled persons. Their natural behaviour
to cuddle, fabulous attitude to just sitting next to the subject and hearing about their troubles, resting chin in an
individual’s lap to check in with you and make sure that you are OK to have a tremendous comforting effect
which should be used gainfully without wasting. Similarly, these veteran dogs would also get a comfort, love
and purpose in return till they breathe their last.

Col (Dr) PK Chug (Retd) is the leading Military and Police K9 Trainer and Senior
Administrator with Government of India. Before assuming the current assignment of
bringing in transformational change in Police Service K9s with the Police Forces of the
country, he had nearly 26 years’ service experience in Army. He had commanded Dog
Units on six occasions with Army and Special Forces including his last command of the
most prestigious K9 Unit of NSG. He is known for introducing multiple innovative &
inexpensive solutions to augment the performance of Military and Police Service K9s.
He has authored a large number of professional and technical articles for leading publications on technical
subjects. He is an international speaker and master K9 trainer to educate on the subject of PSKs and has been
conferred with honours and awards in almost every assignment held by him including ‘Chief of Army Staff
Commendation’ thrice, United Nation’s Force Commander Commendation and Citation by DoD, USA.


Trained Police Dog

An Asset for the Security Forces
Gopesh Sahay Nag
Commandant (Veterinary), Frontier HQ, BSF Jammu

It is a well-known fact that dogs are were trained as ‘Dogs of Combat’ hear a sound four times better the
the best friend of the men since for use as scouts, attackers, sentries distance wise. However, it is the
ages. Dogs have been domesticated and trackers. Their uses had been sense of sniffing which men have
some thirty to forty thousand years varied and the same continues exploited the most. The wider
ago. Men have exploited various to exist even in modern military angle of vision by dogs add to their
traits of dogs for help and survival. usage. The use of dogs in warfare already blessed capabilities.
The most important one is the use has been common even in many
of dogs in security. Men since the early civilizations. As warfare has Dogs can be trained in many
times of dependence on hunting progressed, their purpose has fields such as Explosive detection,
for food have kept dogs with them changed greatly. Narcotic Detection, Infantry
for security and attack. Later, men Dogs have many peculiar qualities Patrol, Guarding, Tracking,
started using them successfully as including that of Sniffing and Search & Rescue Operations,
an offensive against enemy forces. Casualty detection, Enemy Flush
Use of dogs in World War I and II Hearing. Dogs have two giant out, Messenger duty, Wild Life
were very fruitful and is known to olfactory bulbs in the brain, Protection etc. However, Explosive
all. Traditionally, the most common which weigh around 60 grams, detection remains the field of
breeds for the military operations almost four times as much that highest demand as it is directly
have been the German Shepherd of human olfactory bulbs. Fact related to the safeguarding of
and Hounds. Of late, in Police remains that the canine brain is valuable life and property besides
Service K9 (PSK) there has been about one-tenth of the size of the having a psychological effect on
a shift to smaller breeds with a human one, which indicates that masses.
keener sense of smell and easy the canine brain has forty times
manoeuvrability for detection work as much of its brain devoted to To provide a common platform
like Cocker Spaniel, and to more sniffing as humans do. The sniffing for training of dogs, National
resilient breeds such as the Belgian and scent discrimination power of Training Centre for Dogs (NTCD)
Malinois for the attack, patrolling, a dog is reckoned to be 150000 was established in the year 1970
tracking etc for law enforcement. times better than a man. A dog can at BSF Academy Tekanpur to train
The use of Indian breeds of dogs dogs and handlers of all state and
has also been thought upon in
recent times as per directions of
Government of India. Indigenous
breeds have been trained in
different fields and assessed for
training uptake to evaluate their
uses and future replacement of
foreign breeds of dogs.

Dogs in warfare have a long history
starting in ancient times. Dogs


Central Police forces. Besides this, to everyone around the globe. Moreover, narcotics are high
the centre was assigned the task of Almost all State police forces, odorous substances which make
carrying out Breeding of dogs as Central Armed Police Forces and scent conditioning very easy. It’s
well. Today the centre is a premier Armed Forces have dogs skilled in a very playful training which both
training institute in the field of Explosive detection. dog and handler enjoy. The only
dog training and is a ‘Centre of difficulty with this training is legal
Excellence’. Equally important for society is possession of narcotics for training
a Narcotic detection dog. These purpose, for which permission and
The world has seen many bomb days narcotics are related to Licensing are required from the
blasts in the recent past including Narco-terrorism which speaks ‘If Narcotics Control Bureau. However,
those in our own country. Explosive you cannot conquer a country artificial scent kits of Narcotics are
detection dogs are trained to with military power, conquer it commercially available in Market
detect explosives hidden anywhere with Narco-terrorism’. If the youth which simulates the principal
including ground, building, of a country plunge in narcotics content of scent similar to that of
vehicle, luggage, human body addiction, the country is almost original narcotics. Their possession
etc. They have an uncanny trait of dead in a few decades without a is relatively hassled free. The shelf
finding out all kinds of explosives. war. Narcotics are mainly smuggled life of these synthetic scent kits is
Explosive detection dogs are from China, Myanmar, Thailand, decent enough provided they are
trained to indicate the presence of Indonesia and African countries. kept as per commercial protocol.
an explosive article only silently by History is evident of some huge
sitting, waving tail or by staring into cache of narcotics by trained dogs Most frequently demanded dog
the eyes of the handler. This is a at International Airports, Dockyards by state police forces is a Tracker
most difficult field of dog training as and at check-posts dog. In simpler words, we can
the dog does not have the freedom on international call it a Crime detection dog.
to fiddle, play, scratch or mouth an borders. Training Tracker dogs help in solving cases
explosive article, which otherwise a dog in narcotic of dacoity, theft, rape, murder etc.,
is a basic instinct of a dog, as it may detection is one of where identification of a culprit
lead to blast. At times even barking the easiest training. is required. Tracker dogs work on
can lead to blast if the device is The dog has full human scent. The unbelievable
having sound sensors. Militants freedom to mouth, power to discriminate different
and Anti National elements these play, fiddle or scratch scents make dogs a wonderful tool
days use crude kind of explosives the article as there to solve complicated cases. Dogs
or mixtures of explosives, i.e. IEDs, is no risk to human can find out both ways from Man
which is a very familiar name life and property. to Article (identifying an article of
a particular man whose scent has
been given to the dog) and from


Article to Man (identifying a man and sniffing, work hand in hand. Government of India, National
after taking the scent of his article). The German Shepherd Dog is the Training Centre for Dogs (NTCD), a
This is of very high importance breed of choice for this training Centre of Excellence, BSF Academy,
in Shinakhti Parade (Parade of owing to erect ears which help
Suspects to find out actual culprit). in the easy gathering of sound Tekanpur (Gwalior) started working
The result of a Shinakhti parade waves. Besides they have good on the project of designing the
by a Tracker dog is acceptable in a ear mobility which allows them training of dogs in S&R. Since then,
court of law as evidence. Training a to rapidly pinpoint the exact several batches of S&R dogs have
dog in Tracking is very difficult and location of the sound. Dog gives a successfully passed out from NTCD
its duration is longest. signal of caution silently to patrol to serve the mankind at times of
contingent on getting either scent natural calamities. The Battalions
Infantry Patrol dog training is mostly of the human through upwind or of National Disaster Response
used in thick jungle/relatively silent on hearing very low decibel of Force (NDRF) have dogs trained
areas to indicate the presence noises which are otherwise not by NTCD in S&R, not only in the
of ambush of militants. This is a audible to humans. These dogs are earthquake-affected area but also
training in which both the qualities refrained from barking and making for flood relief, Nuclear Biological
of a dog i.e., extraordinary hearing unwarranted noises which can lead and Chemical Warfare (NBC) and
to the disclosure of tactical position other disasters.
of patrol contingent.
Guarding is an instinct of all the
Besides Anti Militancy Operations, dogs. Men have exploited this
dogs have proved their mettle in trait for guarding vital installations
Natural Calamities as well. The like Ops room, radar station,
massive earthquake in Bhuj area high-security campus, hangers,
of Gujarat on 26 January 2001 ammunition dump etc, besides
is still fresh in our memories. The using them at International borders.
need for Search and Rescue (S&R) Guard dog is an attack dog,
dogs was immediately felt to trace which on letting loose can even
and save the life of persons buried kill the intruder, hence its proper
alive under the rubble of collapsed controlling and gearing is very
buildings. On the directions of essential. Mostly Rottweiler, Belgian
Shepherd, German shepherd and
Dobermann are suitable for this
task. It is relatively easy to train a
dog in Guarding as it aims at the
only refinement of attack instinct of
a dog.

Dogs have also been used by
security forces for intimidation.
Though it is quite a controversial
Military Working Dogs of the
United States have been effectively
used in wars in Afghanistan and
Iraq. Un-muzzled working dogs
were used to threaten and attack
the jail inmates and prisoners of
wars for retrieving vital military
information from them.


A new milestone was laid by NTCD head held camera give live images thought upon for use of dogs in
in 2016 with the start of Wildlife to their handlers and control room. Underground tunnel detection and
Protection Dog Training on the Lightweight bulletproof jackets are Drone detection. A few trials have
request of Ministry of Environment being designed to safeguard these been conducted which have so far
and Forest, Government of India. precious dogs from possible enemy remained un-conclusive and need
The NTCD designed a course fire. further explorations.
for training of dogs in Wild Life
Protection and apprehension of Mob control dogs are used as an Dogs have helped spread
Wild Life Criminals. Dogs were effective tool to stop approaching Honourable Prime Minister’s
trained in this field and deployed unruly masses towards the message of Swachh Bharat Mission
all over India in various National prohibited area. After being by their playful rendition of picking
Parks, Tiger Reserves and Wild challenged and cautioned of the litter and putting it in the dustbin,
Life Sanctuaries. In less than five possible use of dogs on them, a thereby motivating and educating
years they have solved many few trained ferocious-looking dogs humans especially children about
mysteries of Wild Life crimes. are let loose under controlled cleanliness.
After this magnanimous success, leash towards the mob to disperse
the Government has decided to them. It is worth mentioning that Use of dogs in non-security
deploy Wild Life Protection dogs the objective of this training is not matters has also got the attention
in all the important National Parks. to harm or injure anyone but to of mankind since long. Besides
Therefore, wildlife protection dog produce deterrence to disperse the being a great companion and stress
training has now become a regular mob. buster, they are known worldwide
feature at NTCD. for proving their mettle in the
Honourable Prime Minister of India detection of Cancerous cells, hence
A few new fields of dog training Sh Narendra Modi during his visit called Therapy dogs.
have been evolved very recently to NTCD Tekanpur appreciated
namely Enemy Flush out Dog the services being rendered by Talking of recent COVID-19, a few
Training and Mob Control Dog trained dogs for human society countries like the UK and Germany
Training. In the former, trained and emphasised upon their greater are running trials of using dogs in
dogs are set free towards a given use with an exploration of more the detection of CORONA affected
target or enemy hideout. These avenues of dog training especially patients through sniffing. Maybe,
fast-moving charged dogs barge using indigenous breeds of dogs. tomorrow success may knock the
into the hideout to find, apprehend Of late, newer avenues are being door and open the gates.
and neutralize enemy by the attack
and at the same time with their


Dogs are just an inseparable their uncanny and innate qualities A rich tribute to those dogs who laid
commodity for humanity especially of extraordinary sniffing and down their lives in the service of the
for security forces as they render guarding. Bordermen, who remain nation and a warm salute to those
relentless service to safeguard away from their homes and families who are helping security forces
valuable life and property besides to safeguard the sanctity of our from militants and anti-national
solving mysteries of crime with motherland, find true companion elements as Force Multipliers. A
and force multiplier in dogs. dog memorial has been created
at the National Training Centre
for Dogs, BSF Academy, Tekanpur
in memory of all those dogs who
have laid down their lives in the
line of duty. The names of proud
dogs have been inscribed on it.
All the dignitaries who visit NTCD
invariably pay floral tributes to K9
warriors who have left for heavenly
abode leaving behind the rich
tradition of sacrifice and valour for
others to follow. The heart touching
lines on memorial read as under:

Dr G S Nag, Commandant (Vet), BSF is Masters in Veterinary Obstetrics
and Gynaecology from GB Pant University of Agriculture and Technology,
Pantnagar. He has got vast experience of serving in challenging
appointments both in field and training institutions. He has previously
commanded the National Training Center for Dogs, Tekanpur Gwalior.
The officer is a keen Tennis player having represented BSF in All India
Police Lawn Tennis Championships for 18 years. Presently officer is
posted as Commandant (Vet) Frontier HQ BSF Jammu.


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