The Rensselaer County Deputy Sheriff's PBA has within it 5 working
canine teams. The K9 unit at the Rensselaer County Sheriff's office
is unique in that our dogs are trained in a multitude of detection
and working categories. As a collective unit our teams are able
to perform specific tasks such as narcotics and cadaver detection,
arson investigation, tracking, explosive detection and patrol.
The K9 unit has proved time and again that it is a valuable resource
in the fight against crime. The unit maintains a high level of
proficiency with their K9 teams due to the extensive training
they must undergo. Each handler/K9 team must complete many hours
of training before being certified to enter service and once they
enter service they must continuously train both on and off duty.
Below is a list of some of the functions our K9 teams perform.
- Search for hidden suspects
- Apprehend fleeing suspects
- Search for lost persons
- Search for evidence
- Bomb detection
- Arson investigations
- Protection of the handler, other officers and citizens
- Conduct public demonstrations
- To be a visual deterrent for crime
What kinds of dogs are used?
The K-9 unit utilizes two breeds of dogs. There are two German
Shepherds which are trained to protect the handler and other officers
who are nearby when needed. They are even trained to assist an
officer even without being called. The dogs are extremely useful
when searching buildings, fields and wooded areas for fleeing
or hiding suspects that are often armed. They are also trained
for narcotics detection and to track lost/missing persons.
The K-9 unit also has within it 3 Labrador Retrievers. These
dogs are used for specialized purposes. Bleau is able to search
for narcotics, cadavers and lost/missing persons. Inferno is trained
in the detection of accelerants to assist arson investigations
and Sid is trained in bomb detection.
All of the working police dogs live at home with their handler
and are constantly training both on/off duty. Living at home with
their handler allows the teams to build a strong relationship
with their partners which translates to a more effective team
on the street.