The Use of Canines in Law Enforcement Essay

The Use of Canines in Law Enforcement Essay

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The term “man’s best friend” stems from the domestication of canines in early history. Studies have shown that these four legged creatures became domesticated over 33,000 years ago. Starting with the wolf, there are now over 400 different types of breeds. Dogs were first used as helpers. People would use them for jobs such as hunting and herding. As time went by, people began to use them more for aid and protection. The U.S. Army was the first to initiate the use of K9 Units in 1835. Europe, Belgium, Germany, and Hungary realized the potential of these canines and picked up on the idea in the late 1800s. As early as 1911, Germany alone had over 400 police stations equipped with K9 Units. There are now over 22,000 canines used in law enforcement.
Bloodhounds, known for their idea; sense of smell, was the first breed used for police in Europe. This was in 1888 when Jack the Ripper was on the loose. The famous German Shepherd made its debut in Germany during the Holocaust by the Nazis for prisoner control. At this time, they were used less for protection and more for attacks. With the proper training canines are now considered legitimate police officers. Every state offers their own K9 training academy. On average, all training academies start the training process when the dog is still considered a puppy. This is around 12-15 months. It is possible, but very difficult to train at a younger age due to the lack of concentration and maturity of the puppy. The first step in the training process is basic obedience. This is when the puppy learns the basic commands, such as sit, stay, come, and, down. Depending on the academy, the portion of the training lasts about 6-8 weeks. Some dogs are trained in Europe and then brought over to the Uni...


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...police canine ‘uncovered a shipment of marijuana in heat-sealed Mylar bags, inside of plastic lines crates, sealed with foam sealant, inside of a storage garage’. This just goes to show how thorough and vigorous these parts of the training are. Once the dog finds the hiding spot, there are two types of alerts that the dog can do to inform the handler. The first type is an aggressive alert. This is where the dog will bark or scratch at the location of the drugs. The second type of alert is a passive alert. This is where the dog would sit when they found the location. In some cases, an aggressive alert would be dangerous, so they teach the dog a softer approach. The canines are taught to give both aggressive and passive alerts when the time is appropriate. Once all of the training is complete, the canine is finally allowed to join his or her handler in the patrol car.

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