K-9s to track scent of success in Chesco

For several days next week, K-9 teams inspired by the smell of success will assemble at the Chester County Public Safety Training Campus in South Coatesville.

Chester County Deputy Sheriff Ryan Barr trains with Murphy, his K-9 partner. Photo courtesy of JD Photography

Chester County Deputy Sheriff Ryan Barr trains with Murphy, his K-9 partner. Photos courtesy of JD Photography

Chester County is hosting the U.S. Police Canine Association’s (USPCA) Region 6 scent certifications from March 14 to March 16, according to a press release from the Sheriff’s Office.

“We are expecting up to 80 canine teams attempting to certify during the trials, which makes it the largest scent certification event ever hosted in Pennsylvania,” Chester County Sheriff Carolyn “Bunny” Welsh said in the release. “All of the Sheriff’s Office K-9 teams are competing, and we are the only agency with at least one canine in every specialty. After this, we hope that our teams will advance to the national trials in Philadelphia in June, to compete against the best in the world.”

So far, more than 40 narcotic teams have registered as well as 20 explosive teams, nine cadaver teams, and one accelerant team, Welsh said.

The USPCA is the largest and oldest active organization of its kind and Region 6 is comprised of canine law enforcement agencies across Pennsylvania and parts of New Jersey. Chester County will also host the USPCA Region 6 Police Dog Field Trials in August. There are already more than 40 narcotic teams registered as well as 20 explosive teams, nine cadaver teams and one accelerant team.

Sheriff's Deputy Brian Bolt is shown with his partner, Yukon.

Chester County Deputy Sheriff Brian Bolt is shown with his partner, Yukon.

Welsh said Chester County’s hosting of the USPCA event coincides with the 10th anniversary of the establishment of canine teams in the Sheriff’s Office.

“We began with two canine teams, and now our unit has six handlers and eight canines,” Welsh said in the release. “They provide excellent service, specializing in explosives, narcotics, accelerants, and cadaver. In addition to being nationally certified in their individual scent discipline, all are nationally certified in human tracking, evidence recovery and obedience. The most recent addition to our K-9 unit is a comfort canine, used primarily in the Special Victims Unit.”

Chester County Deputy Sheriff Paul Bryant Jr., the newest member of the Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit, is a Level III trainer and national judge for the USPCA.

“I am excited that the Chester County Sheriff’s Office is hosting this event,” Bryant said in the release. “The response has been phenomenal: Large numbers like this are usually only at national events.”

Along with maintaining a minimum working standard for all K-9 units, Welsh said her office works to improve the abilities of the canines in police work, a goal that results in better service to the community. Chester County Sheriff K-9 members also interact with community groups.

“Many of the residents of Chester County have met our canines and their handlers at schools and community functions across the county,” Welsh said in the release. “We think it’s very important for our citizens to see these incredible animals close up and meet their handlers.”

At the end of last year, Melody, a Labrador-Golden Retriever, joined seven German Shepherds, all of whom are trained in tracking, with specialties in drug, accelerant, explosives or cadaver detection, in the Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit.

Welsh said Melody is available to provide “therapy services” in circumstances when children or adults experience heightened tensions. The dog’s calming presence has already proven to be helpful in relaxing crime victims, especially children, during interviews.

 

 

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading...

About CFLive Staff

See Contributors Page http://chaddsfordlive.com/writers/

Comments

comments

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.