K9 Ride-Along - Page 2 - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-05-2019, 06:49 PM
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Originally Posted by NaughtyNibbler View Post
The owner of the obedience school I go to tried to make nice with a 4-legged K-9 Officer, while they were both inside a veterinary clinic last week. He doesn't often pet dogs, but he pet the K-9 officer once, without a problem. On the 2nd occasion, the dog attacked him. He appeared at class on Sunday with both arms wrapped up in bandages. Guess he had to have surgery and a blood transfusion.

The instructor mentioned an opinion about the K-9 officer's training and then something about the breeding. Hopefully next Sunday, I'll be able to get some more details. Probably best to not pet the K-9 officer
The owner of the obedience school should have known better than to try and pet a Police K-9. Not all K-9's are Lassie and Police K9's should not be Lassie. Contrary to popular belief Lassie would be a poor Police dog. Some dogs are social, some not so much. I had to front kick a drunk one night that thought my dog wouldn't bite him. I kicked him in the chest to save him from being bit. The other day on a school search a School Admin walked up to my dog who was in a down and almost stepped on him. He was very close to getting bit, I had to physically stop the guy by placing my hand in his chest and pushing him out of the way. That got my blood pressure up and my heart racing. That guy had no idea how close he was to going to the hospital. I was to mad to say anything so I just walked away, I had some one else who was calmer go and talk to the guy. The Officer should have never let the so called "obedience school" owner near his dog the first time. That was a mistake on the Officer's part. Some one that owns an obedience school should be better at reading dogs and body language. He put himself in a bad position, but he will blame the cop, the dog, the training and the breeding. Typical.

On another note: Police dogs and pets bark in cars, it's completely natural. My dog Boomer was exceptionally trained and would go crazy in a car if a dog or a person walked by. There is nothing wrong with that.

Our policy and SOP's prohibit citizens from petting our K-9's. So things like this don't happen. You will not believe how many people have asked to pet my Patrol dog. When I respond that it is a violation of policy and we do not allow citizens to pet our dogs the responses I get are: "All dogs love me!" I can tell you 100% that my dog loves me and no one else. The "all dogs love me" crowd does not understand that Police Dogs do not care about them or like them and will bite them. The other response is "why don't you train your dog better, so I can pet him?" My response is that "my dog is very well trained, and he is not here for you to pet. He is working, have a nice day."

To those that think all Police K-9's should be able to snuggle with Kids then fight a man intent on killing them and go back to snuggling with the kids, you are mistaken. It is the very rare dog that can do that. Most Police K-9's that are overly socialized and super friendly are not the best K-9's. Being a Police K-9 is a very dangerous job for the dog, it is also a very dangerous job for the handler. These dogs need to have an edge and a very serious and aggressive side. They need to be able to bite, react and engage a person on command instantly. They also need to be able to protect their handlers with no command at all. When my dog comes out of the car he is "on", fully alert and ready to go. He is not looking for people to pet him. He is scanning and looking for possible targets or opportunities.

A Police K-9 needs to be social enough to work and be around a group of Police officers with out biting them. A good Police dog does not need to be everyones friend, or a social butterfly. My dog Boru is just social enough to be good with other Officers, he will never go to a family picnic or ever be loose with company in my house or in the yard. Other cops do not handle or pet him. He just needs to be able to stand next to them on a track or building search and not bite them. He is under control and that is what I want. We have a very social GSD in our unit and people can pet him, he is our least producing dog in the unit, more like a nice pet. That is what happens when your Patrol dog is over socialized, it becomes a nice pet. Few dogs can be extremely social and exceptional Patrol dogs. IMHO
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-05-2019, 06:54 PM
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Would it be possible to request a Ride-Along with a K9 unit? I'd really love to hang out with the officers and see what they do.

Here in Tempe, we do have a Ride-Along program, but I don't appear to qualify for it (it seems to mostly be focused on committee members or possible recruits, etc). The only category I could possibly fit in would be "friend"--but I don't know anyone! Any ideas on how to get "in?"

Thanks!
I would contact the K-9 unit supervisor and ask about the Policy. We allow ride alongs with our Officers and K-9 Handlers. There are restrictions that have to be met. Does your dept have a "citizens Police Academy?" We teach a class for the Citizens Police Academy each session. After the class many of the people ask to come out for ride alongs with us. I often take them in my car.
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-05-2019, 07:20 PM
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I once met a k9 that was being retired. He was relaxing at the mall (when malls were still a big thing) and I was able to sit down and pet him. He seemed to enjoy the attention. I do not know what he was trained for. I suspect it wasn't for apprehension. Perhaps more scent detection or SAR.

I've been listening to podcasts like Controlled Aggression and Working Dog Radio. They have mentioned that it would be good to have at least one other human that could handle the dog if the handler goes down. I listened to 2 stories of military handlers who got blown up and another had to take the dog for awhile, so that the handler could be taken care of and the dog brought to the veterinarian service.

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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-05-2019, 10:00 PM
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Meh, looks like the K9 era is nearing an end.

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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-06-2019, 01:57 PM
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@Nigel, LOL! That will never happen.
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post #16 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-10-2019, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Slamdunc View Post
I would contact the K-9 unit supervisor and ask about the Policy. We allow ride alongs with our Officers and K-9 Handlers. There are restrictions that have to be met. Does your dept have a "citizens Police Academy?" We teach a class for the Citizens Police Academy each session. After the class many of the people ask to come out for ride alongs with us. I often take them in my car.
Thanks for all the great info, Slamdunc. I will have to check into this, but it looks as if my local department might not have this stuff. My BIL used to be a prosecutor and was telling me about this in the jurisdiction he worked in, but I didn't see there was an equivalent setup here in Tempe. But I will contact them and see what they have to say!
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