Wendell Nope Police K-9 Pages
SWAT Dog Performance Standards
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Here you will find the performance objectives utilized for training and certifying SWAT Dogs. These are new and unique standards which the Utah Police Academy has researched and determined to be a reasonable foundation for this special variety of Service Dog.
- General Information
- The skills favorable for successful deployment of a Tactical Deployment Dog are recognized within the below-listed categories. The Dog can be successfully trained to an appropriate skill level by a qualified Tactical Deployment Dog Handler under the guidance of a qualified Tactical Deployment Dog Instructor. The competency can then be evaluated and declared by a qualified Tactical Deployment Dog Judge.
- A Tactical Deployment Dog is intended to supplement or enhance Tactical Team personnel in situations wherein the abilities of a Dog may be useful. The utilization of a Tactical Deployment Dog must never compromise the integrity of an operation. The application of such a Dog must conform with the philosophy, "The Dog adapts to the Team, not the Team to the Dog." Consideration of deploying a Tactical Deployment Dog in a high intensity situation must be sanctioned accordingly.
- These exercises cover a limited number of tactical applications. No single exercise is intended to be a resolution in and of itself. Any combination of behaviors may be used according to tactical need.
- Due to the unique and meticulous training associated with a Tactical Deployment Dog, Handlers may choose to concentrate on one skill category at a time. Accordingly, certification may also be conducted one category at a time.
- Certification Scenarios
- Tactical Heeling while Moving in a Team Formation
The Handler and Dog shall assume a position within a Tactical Team. The Team shall exhibit advancing movements in normal, slow, and fast speeds. The Dog shall exhibit an Automatic Sit each time the Team halts.
- Engagement Manuevers while Moving in a Team Formation
During this sequence of exercises the Handler shall be issued a sidearm loaded with blank ammunition. The Handler and Dog shall exhibit Tactical Heeling along a predetermined route. At some point the Handler shall raise the handgun to the "Target" position and fire one volley of two shots. Simultaneously, the Dog shall - without a command - sit calmly and quietly at the heel position. The Handler shall then continue Tactical Heeling at a slow pace. Next, s/he shall drop to a crouching position and fire another volley of two shots. Again, the Dog shall sit automatically and remain calm and alert. The Handler shall then continue Tactical Heeling at a fast pace. Next, s/he shall drop to a prone position and fire a volley of two shots. Now the Dog shall assume a down position beside the Handler. Finally, the Handler shall run at top speed for at least 50 yards and then halt. The Dog shall remain at heel during this sprint.
- Vertical and Horizontal Movement Displayed by Handler and Dog
The Dog may be outfitted in a harness to be worn by its Handler so that the Dog may be evaluated as it is carried horizontally and vertically through a series of obstacles and exercises. These shall consist of at least:
There is no time limit nor any specific order for these exercises, however, extended resting periods between exercises shall be considered faulty. When possible, the exercises shall be set up at a single location.
- A horizontal ladder apparatus;
- A horizontal walk atop a 6 inch wide wall;
- A horizontal sprint of 25 yards;
- A vertical climb up a 25 foot ladder;
- A vertical climb over a six foot high wall;
- A vertical descent of 25 feet on a building; and
- A vertical descent of 25 feet in free space.
- Physical Endurance Displayed by Dog
The Dog shall run a distance of two miles over flat terrain in 12:00 minutes or less. This should not be an exhaustive effort and the Dog shall display an ability to deploy if called upon. The Judge shall determine the procedure to evaluate the Dog's functionality at this point.
- Perimeter Control During Tactical Operations
The Handler and Dog shall assume a Surveillance position as directed by the evaluator. Every 10 minutes for 60 minutes a new distraction shall be presented, in order to evaluate the Dog's ability to remain disciplined. These distractions shall consist of at least:
The Handler shall not physically influence the Dog's behavior during any of these activities. After the Surveillance, another volley of blank gunfire shall be fired from a distance. An individual shall then flee across the perimeter. The Handler shall issue an appropriate warning before deploying the Dog. The Dog shall pursue and engage the fleeing person in strong combat.
- Minimum of 18 rounds of blank ammunition fired by a group of at least three subjects running perpendicular to the Handler and Dog at close range, yelling and making hostile gestures;
- Four individuals engaged in a loud physical encounter at close range;
- A vehicle screeching to a halt at close range from the rear;
- Another Dog engaging an individual at close range;
- An exercise of the evaluator's choice; and
- An exercise of the evaluator's choice.
The Dog shall continue in combat until the perpetrator begins to exhibit a distinct change of behavior. S/he shall clearly want to give up and show signs of extreme fear. S/he shall make defensive gestures toward the Dog, as if trying to protect him/herself from further injury. At this point the Handler shall Disengage the Dog. When the Dog Disengages, the person will continue to act fearful. The actions shall be vigorous and loud, but clearly fearful. S/he will not stand still, but neither will s/he be threatening or furtive. The Dog shall maintain its Disengaged posture as Tactical Team personnel secure the individual. The Dog shall disregard the Team members as they function. The exercise concludes when the individual is removed from the area.
- Tandem Apprehension of Multiple Suspects
Two Handlers and Dogs assume a Surveillance position for a period of ten minutes. The group shall be in very close quarters with each Dog lying next to its Handler. Two individuals shall appear at a distance of at least 50 yards. The Handlers shall issue appropriate warnings before deploying the Dogs. After the Dogs have begun to pursue, the individuals shall turn and charge the Dogs. The persons shall be no further than six feet apart as they charge. The Dogs shall engage the individuals, separately, in strong combat. The Handlers shall tactically advance to a safe proximity before instructing the Dogs to Release. The Dogs shall remain in a guarding posture until Tactical Team personnel approach to secure the individuals. The Handlers shall then command their Dogs to the Heel position. The exercise concludes when the individuals are removed from the area.
- Discrimination of a Targeted Subject
The Handler and Dog shall assume a prone Surveillance position in a very concealed location. The field of view shall be partially obstructed by vehicles, etc. Over a period of fifteen minutes several individuals shall walk and jog through the area. At the ten minute mark an individual representing a High-Risk Subject shall enter the area and sit quietly. The Handler shall discreetly target the Dog on the Subject. Over the next five minutes other individuals shall walk and jog through the area. The evaluator shall instruct the Handler to deploy the Dog - without a Warning - to engage the motionless Subject. The Dog shall pursue and engage the person in strong combat while, simultaneously, Tactical Team personnel rush in, grasp, and secure him. The Team shall rapidly drag the Subject for at least fifty feet while the Dog maintains its hold. Only then may the Handler cause the Dog to Release. It shall then disregard any actions of Team members. The exercise concludes when the individual is removed from the area.
- Disruption of a Targeted Subject
This exercise shall begin prior to the arrival of the Handler and Dog. An individual shall be instructed by the Evaluator to brandish a handgun loaded with blank ammunition in such a way as to simulate a mentally disturbed subject. The individual shall clearly exhibit no intentional harm to others. The Handler and Dog shall then be instructed to assume a Surveillance position as near the individual as tactically possible. Once they are in place, the individual shall sporadically fire a shot, continuing the mentally disturbed behavior. After at least four shots are fired, the Handler shall watch for a moment when the Dog might be deployed to disrupt the individual's behavior. The Dog shall then be deployed - without a Warning - to disrupt the person's behavior. At the moment the Dog engages, Tactical Team personnel shall rush in to secure the individual. The Dog shall disregard any actions by the Team and maintain its hold. When the person is secured the Handler may cause the Dog to Release. It shall again disregard any actions of Team members. The exercise concludes when the individual is removed from the area.
- Stealth Entry, Team Movement, and Clearing High-Risk Areas
The Handler and Dog shall assume a position in a line of Tactical Team personnel exiting a vehicle. The Team shall advance to a position outside a building. When signaled by the evaluator, the Team shall make a stealth entry. With the application of a "Dragline," the Handler and Dog shall exhibit the following behaviors depending on the layout of the building:
The evaluator shall have placed an individual representing a High-Risk Subject in one of these four areas prior to the deployment. S/he shall engage the Dog as soon as it comes within the field of vision. The Handler shall not be forewarned about which area the Subject is hiding in. The Dog shall engage in strong combat with the Subject. S/he shall strike the Dog sharply several times on the less sensitive parts of its body and eventually begin yelling for the Dog to be called off. The Handler, assisted by other Team personnel if necessary, shall use the Dragline to bring the person to the Team. Other Team personnel shall use appropriate tactics to provide cover during this maneuver. When the Subject is within reach, Team members shall secure him/her. During this entire process, the Dog shall maintain its hold on the Subject, disregarding the actions of the Tactical officers. Only when the person is secured may the Handler cause the Dog to Release. Again, the Dog shall disregard any Team member. The exercise concludes when the individual is removed from the area.
- Clearing a Stairwell;
- Clearing a Hallway;
- Clearing a Crawlspace/Attic; and/or
- Clearing a Dark Room.
- Forced Extraction of a Non-Compliant High-Risk Subject
The Handler and Dog shall assume a position in a line of an Extraction Team preparing to approach a location from which a Subject is to be extracted. The Team shall advance to a position outside the location. The Team shall follow whatever departmental protocol has been established prior enacting to the extraction. With the application of a "Dragline," the Handler and Dog shall extract the subject to a point at which the Extraction Team will secure the subject. Other members of the Extraction Team may assist the Handler if necessary to bring the Subject to the Team. When the Subject is within reach, Team members shall secure him/her. During this entire process, the Dog shall maintain its hold on the Subject, disregarding the actions of the Extraction Team. Only when the Subject is secured may the Handler cause the Dog to Release. Again, the Dog shall disregard any Extraction Team member. The exercise concludes when the Subject is removed from the area.
- Forced Capture of a Non-Compliant High-Risk Subject
The Handler and Dog shall assume a position in a line of a Capture Team preparing to approach a location from which a subject is to be captured. The Team shall advance to an appropriate tactical position. The Team shall follow whatever departmental protocol has been established prior to enacting the capture. The Handler shall then deploy the Dog to engage the Subject to be captured. The Capture Team shall then tactically advance until they are able to subdue the Subject. If multiple Subjects are present, the Team shall enact such tactics as departmentally established for the situation. The Handler shall accompany the Capture Team and assist as departmental protocol dictates. During this entire process, the Dog shall maintain its hold on the Subject, disregarding the actions of the Capture Team. Only when the Subject is secured may the Handler cause the Dog to Release. Again, the Dog shall disregard any Capture Team member. The exercise concludes when the Subject is removed from the area.
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