People quite often ask me, “What makes your dogs better out there on the road than my graduates?” Very simply stated, it’s our handlers training program. The 5-week handlers training course at Mid-Michigan Kennels is second to none. We pride ourselves on teaching our students not just how to use the dog and its skills, but to also deploy safely and tactically. We spend several hours in the classroom covering such topics as a legal review of current and relative case law as well as an in depth discussion of the 4th Amendment and how and where it applies to the use of canines by law enforcement.
As the owner and head trainer, I feel it is my responsibility to send students/officers out with not only the best K9 possible, but also with the ability to deploy in a manner which increases officer safety and to ensure the dogs well being too. We use such training methods as scenario based and what if this happened. Our students are trained to decide when to deploy or not to deploy their dog. Should I release the dog in this situation to apprehend his suspect or not? Just showing an officer how to use his dog isn’t enough. They need to know when to use their dog.
Our training venues are set in real world environments. Actual school buildings and auditoriums. Vehicle impound lots and industrial parks all play a part in conducting realistic training and at the same time making sure that all of the basic police canine and handler skills are taught. I know of many police canine training facilities that never teach or conduct a single training traffic stop with their students and dogs. The first time an officer hits the button on his “Hot and Pop” shouldn’t be on the streets the first time he needs his dog to deploy and assist him with a resisting suspect. At Mid-Michigan Kennels we spend 2 full training days on traffic stops and bail outs to make sure the dog and handler are clear on how and why they use that piece of equipment.
During our explosives detection handlers training we have the students conduct a search of a large structure based on a bomb threat. Once the dog has cleared the area assigned we hand them a piece of paper and a pencil and require them to hand draw a floor plan of the building and show where the suspected device was located. This is something that they should be able to provide the EOD team upon its arrival. This example is one of many reasons why Mid-Michigan Kennels, Inc., has the best overall basic canine handlers course available.