Utah Department of Public Safety

POST - In-Service Training - K-9 Program

General Information:

The K-9 Program provides training and government certification for Patrol, Narcotics, Cadaver, Explosives, SWAT, Search/Rescue, or Tracking/Trailing Dogs.  Officer training levels include Handler, Instructor, or Judge.  Ccourses are 8 weeks duration.  Dormitory rooms and an on-site kennel are available. No tuition is required for Utah officers.  Out-of-state officers pay a fee of $300.00 per course.

Contact Sgt. Wendell Nope via email at wnope@utah.gov or cell phone 801-209-5790.

Scroll down for more information, including certification standards and documents for each of the disciplines listed.

Quick Links:                           

*Training Course Schedule(Updated 23 August 2013)

   *** K-9 Supervisor classes now scheduled ***

*Course Application Packet(Updated 23 August 2013)

*Frequently Asked Questions (Updated 20 March 2013)

*Photo Gallery (Updated 07 March 2013)

*Reserve a Dorm Room

*Visual Tour of the K-9 Facility 

*K-9 Program Updates (Updated 6 July 2012)

*K-9 Program Staff

Patrol Dogs:

The Patrol Dog training and certification standards are Reality-Based.  The two most common K-9 “capture” philosophies FIND/BITE and FIND/BARK may be taught (at the Handler’s option) to the same dog. The K-9 Program teaches the DISENGAGE (shut-down) behavior to all Patrol Dogs, offering a "fail-safe" option in exigent circumstances.

Click hereto read/download the training record documents.

Click here to read/download the certification standards.

Click here to read/download Patrol Dog Certification Sheets.

Drug Dogs:

The Drug Dog training and certification standards are Reality-Based. The training protocol channels the K-9's natural drives such that the K-9 perceives it is hunting simulated prey odors. They are also trained to bypass non-drug odors.  This process creates highly-motivated K-9's that exercise sensitivity and discrimination of drug odors. Certification is conducted via Single-Blind testing. Since the creation of the K-9 Program, over 24 billion dollars of illegal drugs have been seized by K-9 graduates.

Click here to read/download the training record documents.

Click here to read/download the certification standards.

Click here to read/download the certification blank test sheets.

Cadaver Dogs:

The Cadaver Dog training and certification standards are Reality-Based.  The training protocol channels the K-9's natural drives such that the K-9 perceives it is hunting simulated prey odors. They are likewise trained to bypass non-human decomposed flesh. This process creates highly-motivated K-9's that exercise extreme sensitivity and discrimination of decomposed human flesh odors.  Cadaver Dogs are deployed primarily in homicide investigations to find decomposed human tissue odor. Certification is conducted via Single-Blind testing. 

Click here to read/download the training record documents.

Click here to read/download the certification standards.

Click here to read/download the certification blank test sheets.

Bomb Dogs:

The Bomb Dog training and certification standards are Reality-Based.  The training protocol channels the K-9's natural drives such that the K-9 perceives it is hunting simulated prey odors. This process creates highly-motivated K-9's that exercise extreme sensitivity and discrimination of explosive odors. Bomb Dogs are deployed primarily in VIP sweeps and during threats. Certification is conducted via Single-Blind testing.

Click here to read/download the training record documents.

Click here to read/download the certification standards.

Click here to read/download the certification blank test sheets.

SWAT Dogs:

The SWAT Dog training and certification standards are Reality-Based.  The training protocol channels the K-9's natural drives such that the K-9 perceives it is functioning in a "pack" environment. This process creates highly-motivated K-9's that are mentally-stable, yet highly-intense in the extremely fluid and unpredictable situations a SWAT Team encounters. SWAT Dogs are deployed primarily in incidents that have escalated to a point that conventional law enforcement practices are not sufficient to resolve the problem.

Click here to read/download the training record documents.

Click here to read/download the certification standards.

Click here to read/download the certification blank test sheets.

Search & Rescue Dogs:

The Search and Rescue Dog training and certification standards are Reality-Based. The training protocol channels the K-9's natural drives such that the K-9 perceives it is searching for a person who has its favorite toy. This process creates highly-motivated K-9's that work intensely even in unstable environments or when fatigued. Search and Rescue Dogs are deployed primarily in catastrophes and finding lost persons.   Certification is conducted via Single-Blind testing.

Click here to read/download the training record documents.

Click here to read/download the certification standards.

Click Here to read/download the certification blank test sheets.

Tracking Dogs:

The Tracking Dog training and certification standards are Reality-Based.  This variety of K-9 is sometimes referred to as a "Footstep Detector Dog" since it focuses on finding footsteps (ground disturbance) and not human odor. This produces highly-focused K-9's that follow the exact path of a person, whether a lost victim or a criminal. Tracking Dogs are deployed primarily in investigations wherein the exact path of a person is critical to determine.

Click here to read/download the training record documents.

Click here to read/download the certification standards.

Click here to read/download the certification blank test sheets.

Trailing Dogs:

The Trailing Dog training and certification standards are Reality-Based.  This variety of K-9 focuses on finding human odor along the path of a person's movements.   This produces highly-focused K-9's that can rapidly locate a person, whether a lost victim or a criminal.   Tracking Dogs are deployed primarily in investigations wherein the a person needs to be located as quickly as possible and the actual footstep route is not critical.

Click here to read/download the training record documents.

Click here to read/download the certification standards.

Click here to read/download the certification blank test sheets.

K-9 Handler:

A properly trained and certified K-9 Handler is the "operator" of a highly-trained extremely sensitive law enforcement tool identified by the US Supreme Court thusly, "We are aware of no other investigative procedure that is so limited both in the manner in which the information is obtained and in the content of the information revealed by the procedure."  United States v. Place, 462 U.S. 696 (1983).  Tremendous responsibility and accountability rests upon the shoulders of K-9 Handlers of all disciplines.  The K-9 Program employs Reality-Based training and Single-Blind certification to assure that Handler skills are suitable for this critical function of law enforcement.

Click here to read/download a list of K-9 Handler training courses.

Click here to read/download a

K-9 Instructor:

The training

Click here to read/download a list of K-9 Instructor courses.

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K-9 Judge:

The integrity of the Police K-9 profession rests upon the shoulders of its Judges.  After intense scrutiny and evaluation, a K-9 Judge declares a K-9 and Handler to be streetworthy ... if the skill-set is suitable.  The K-9 Program offers extensive and detailed training to student Judges, providing the skills necessary to perform this critical function.  The government certification a K-9 Judge receives from the K-9 Program is recognized nationally and internationally.

Click here to read/download a list of K-9 Judge training courses.

Click here to read/download blank K-9 certification forms

Click here to read/download

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[Last Update - Friday, 23-Aug-2013 14:16:01 MDT]