Get your Vest on!
Welcome to the k9 cops web site. My name is Jacob Doyon and I am a senior at Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School. I created this site as part of a senior project to bring awareness to the importance and value of our police and other working dogs. I will be entering to ARMY in the fall and hope to be able to work with a K-9 in the ARMY with the hopes of someday returning to my home state of Maine and have my own K-9 partner someday.
These dogs serve as a valuable resource to enhance our law enforcement efforts and in some cases can be more effective than any human officer could ever be. These dogs serve tirelessly, working hard every day either on patrol with a partner or continuing their training.
To understand how valuable these dogs are you must first get a better understanding of what they do and why they do it. The FAQ section includes answers to my questions created from an interview I had with Sargent Dalton of the Maine State Police so a lot of the information relates to the way Maine runs it’s K-9 units.
To understand how remarkable these dogs are I have learned that each canine is evaluated to be sure they posses the right temperament for this demanding career as a working dog. They need to have the correct balance of many different characteristics. The first would be the drive, or willingness, to want to work. Whether the canine is seeking drugs or explosives, or searching for a lost child or hiker lost in the snow they have to have the willingness to work until the job is complete. If they lose interest and give up searching it could put lives in danger. Next would be obedience. These dogs need to be well controlled. While many of us have seen barking police dogs tugging at the end of their leash and it may appear that they would be out of control if let off their leash but nothing could be further from the truth. While they are working they are intense and excitable but they are also well trained to listen to the commands of their partner and only do what they are told to do. They know they have a job to do and they just want to do it so badly that they exude their excitement by barking and shaking. They live to work and they are happiest when doing what they have been trained to do. They also need confidence in more than one way. They cannot be skittish or scared of going over, around or through obstacles. They cannot be scared of loud noises and they cannot back down if they are confronted by a suspect, just the same as any other police officer. They also have to have the confidence in their partner to go where they are told to go without hesitation. The bond between the canine and their partner or handler is one of trust and loyalty unmatched by most human to human bonds.
Probably one of the most valuable qualities of using dogs for police work is that they have no preconceived notions about people or surroundings. They do not judge on any basis. They come to a scene to do a job and they do it no matter who is watching or who they are investigating. If you have drugs they will find them no matter who you are or how well you have hidden them. If you are fleeing from the police they will track you down no matter who or where you are and if you are lost and need to be found they will search for you until they find you no matter who or where you are.
At the end of their day they take off their working vest and go home to relax with their family just like we do. They ask for nothing in return other than to be fed, warm place to sleep and to be able to go do it over again every day. It is our duty to make sure the canines that give so much of themselves to protect and serve our communities are protected as well. Please consider a donation to http://www.vestadog.org/. This organization works with police departments all over the country to make their protection a priority. For my senior project i set up a go fund me account to get donations to vest a dog here in my home state of maine. after reaching the goal of a thousand dollars i went through the vest a dog website to order the vest. The vest that will now be going to Cpl. G.J. Neagle and his K9, Draco.