K9 Unit Policy & Procedure Manual

9 Aug

K9 unit Force Procedure Manual

Included is the Policy and Procedure Manual, Administrative Duties Manual, and SOP’s


Version 4.4

Commander K9 Units


(All rights reserved)

K9 Unit


To provide the best possible professional specialised service in the shortest possible time


To always serve and protect



Tactics, Accuracy, Power & Speed

K9 Unit Policy & Procedure Manual


To establish policy & procedures and standard operating procedures governing the, training, use and administration of police service dog teams employed by the Police Department. These teams that will be referred to throughout this manual as “K9″ teams constitute a handler and a dog.

I. Content





PART 1………………..Administrative Duties…………………………………..3

1.1. Daily Returns

1.2. Weekly Returns

1.3. Monthly Returns

PART 2 Leave or Absence……………………………………..4-6

2.1. Sick Leave

2.2. Annual / Accumulated Leave

2.3. Injury on Duty

2.4. Study Leave

2.5. Special/Family Responsibility / Substance Abuse Leave

2.6. Unpaid Leave

2.7. Time Due

PART 3 After Hours Callout / Standby Duty……………………………..7

3.1. Standby Duties

PART 4 Kennelling Of Dogs………………………………………………………..8

4.1. General Kennel Rules


PART 5 Dipping & Grooming…………………………………………………….9

5.1. Dipping

5.2. Grooming & Inspection of Dogs

PART 6 Penalties………………………………………………………..10


PART 7 Confidentiality Clause…………………………………………………..11

7.1. Media

7.2. The Public

7.3. Special Operations/Incidents/Projects/Tasks


Fields of Contents

  1.              I.          K9 Policy& Procedures
  2.              II.        Standard operating Procedures
  3.              III.      Guidelines manual
  4.              IV.       Safety Manual
  5.              V.         Training manual
  6.              VI.       Administrative procedure manual
  7.              VII.     Field training officers manual


Unless different according to context, the following terms in this order mean:


Unless the commanding officer of the POLICE is expressly mentioned, a commanding officer as described by the act.

1.2              DEPARTMENT

Public Safety/ Community safety/ Police

1.3              DOG HANDLER / MASTER

1.3.1        Dog –Handler

A member of the POLICE K9 Unit, properly trained in the utilization of K9’s, and recognized by the department in the care and handling of Police dogs.

1.3.2        Dog Master

A member of the POLICE properly trained by the department in the care, handling, and administration of trained dogs.

1.4              UNIT COMMANDER

A dog handler/ Master, preferably a Colonel or higher rank considered to be competent and specially appointed by the COP in accordance with regulation 4(3) read together with SO 2 exercise control over the activities of dog handlers /masters and police dogs, and their training.


A dog handler/ Master, preferably a Superintendent or higher rank considered to be competent and specially appointed by the COP in accordance with regulation 4(3) read together with SO 2 exercise control over the activities, of regional commanders

1.6              REGIONAL HEAD

An appropriately trained Superintendent considered being competent and specially appointed by head of the COP to exercise control over the activities of dog units in a particular region.

1.7              SECTION SUPERVISOR

An appropriately trained Inspector considered being competent and specially appointed by COP to exercise control over the activities of dog teams under his/her command.

1.8              POLICE DOG

A dog trained in or more of the following disciplines: Tracking, Patrol, Explosives, Narcotics, and any other relevant specialized training, including blood hounds and Doberman/ bloodhounds, as well as MEDDS dogs and display dogs.

1.9              PATROL DOG

A dog trained by the department: –

  • For the moral support and protection of the unaccompanied handler;
  • To avert immediate danger that may threaten the life of other persons;
  • For the preservation of public safety and order;
  • To act as a deterrent in the prevention of crime;
  • As an aid in the investigation of crime.

1.10          TRACKER DOG

A dog trained by the department and certified as suitable for the application in the search for suspects and livestock, lost children etc.

1.11          NARCOTICS DOG

A dog trained by the department and certified as suitable for the application in aid of an investigation, of narcotics, cannabis and detection thereof. It may also be a police dog multi-purposely trained as a patrol and narcotics dog.

1.12          DB DOG

A dog trained by the department certified suitable for the application as an aid in connection with the search for lost children and tracking.

1.13          EXPLOSIVES DOG

A dog trained by the department certified suitable for the application as an aid in connection with the search for and detecting of explosives, fire arms and explosive devices. Including pyro-techniques, military and commercial explosives.

1.14          PREP DOG

Is a dog that the department is evaluating and preparing for future training and courses, a dog that is still not consider to be a Police dog, but that is afforded the same courtesy and benefits. All these dogs will be on an elimination program to find the right dog for the specific course. A Police dog may be amongst them to be used as a mentor, or discipline or behaviour enforcer dog that might not be fully trained in any category. That will be registered with the department as a training or display dog.


Display dogs are specifically trained by the department to perform to sport dog standards, such as Schutzhund, SAWDOS and does not exclude any other dog sport. These dogs are dually used to improve training skills and methods, and to be used in displays as well as for sport. They will also be used during training and courses to shows students the standard of training required, as well as mentor young dogs, encouraging them to swim, climb and chase or track.

1.16          TRANSFER DOG

A Transfer dog is a dog that gets transferred from one state department or related Law enforcement department to the next (POLICE, CORRECTIONAL SERVICES, METRO POLICE OR THE MILITARY)  as part of an exchange program, breeding program or to help out with critical shortages or accidental death of a dog in order to replace it, or to substitute a dog that has fallen out of a course. The principal is that it will be done on a MOU basis and will not require prior permission from Police on each individual case in the event of an urgent situation. The consent will be binding. A report will follow for record purposes and Police will be dually informed in such an event.

1.17          DONATION DOG

Description: A dog donated to the department by the public, community or private institution to be trained as a police dog; The K9 unit Commander or his delegate will evaluate the dog first and forward a written report on the dog if the K9 unit is interested in the dog and he looks like a good prospect. If not interested the offer will be decline. If excepted – A report will be passed on to the COP, for approval and the dog will be taken up into the Prep dog program for a period of one week for further evaluation or upon awaiting a decision from the COP.

Where the dog is rejected, it will be passed on to the dog rescue register, this register will be kept at the unit with a list of people interested in rescuing dogs that fall out of the program. The K9 unit will endeavour to find a suitable home. If no one is interested the dog will be put down

No dogs will be taken to the SPCA/ dog shelter, if the ownership has been confirmed. Only lost and stray dogs are to be taken to the SPCA.

After one week of evaluation a file will be opened on the dog and he will be sent for a full medical examination and he will be marked with a microchip and will be recorded as a prep dog in the prep dog register against his microchip number and will be the responsibility of the training division. Furthermore when faced with the prospect of a donation the K9 Unit Commander can at his discretion welcome or decline such a donation.

1.18          HELPER/ AGITATOR

A person trained or in training to agitate dogs and be attacked by dogs in a simulation of attack training, all K9 handlers are required to be agitators.

1.19          K9 INSTRUCTOR

A member of the POLICE or any knowledgeable person used in the training or instruction of police dogs and handlers

1.20          K9 FIELD INSTRUCTOR

A SECTION SUPERVISOR, REGIONAL HEAD AND COMMANDER, can be called in to assist with instruction and training of dogs and handlers.

1.21          TRACK LAYER

Also called an assistant.

A member of the POLICE or any knowledgeable person used as an assistant in the training of police dogs.

1.22          DOG UNIT

A location where dogs are stationed, kennelled and cared for


Guidelines for the evaluation and training of police dogs, and handlers

1.24          KENNEL HAND / OFFICIAL

A member specifically or generally appointed to care for police dogs and who is also responsible for the receipt of donated dogs and the keeping of donation registers.

1.25         COP

Chief Of Police – person in charge of institution dealing with dog unit

XIII. Administrative procedure:

Priority statement; core functions

Introduction; A condensed overview of the K9 unit’s Subject matter expert field, the core value system and responsibility of each rank within the K9 unit. Due to the unit specialising the functions have been segmented to form a matrix management structure.

a) K9 Unit  – Commander – Core functions

Tasked with;

  • Overall management and leadership of the K9 unit
  • Building strategic competence
  • Prevention – of loss, of life and assets
  • Ensuring Personal Capacity building activity – activities to enhance personal growth and overall performance
  • Relationship building – within and outside the unit and with the community
  • Recognizing new opportunities – through continued research and development
  • Strategic Planning and project management
  • Catering for Recreation and team building
  • Ensuring compliance and quality
  • Ensuring accountability and transparency
  • Striving for Professionalism and efficiency

b) K9 Unit Operational Commander – Operational Leader – Core Functions

  • Management and leadership of the K9 unit’s operational needs
  • Leadership and team building
  • Prevention – of loss, of life and assets
  • Relationship building – within and outside the unit and with the community
  • Co-ordinating K9 unit operational activities for all regions
  • Supervision of Administrative functions
  • Striving for Professionalism and efficiency
  • Monitoring compliance and quality

c) K9 Unit Section Supervisor and Regional Heads – Colonel .

  • Administration and management of assigned Explosives, Narcotic or Patrol dog’s discipline, in liaison with training divisions K9 Instructor.
  • Total management of all the Regional needs in liaison with the Regional Commander and Operational K9 Unit leader
  • Ensuring feed-back and administration of regional K9’s progress, needs and performance
  • Establishment of good relations and ties within the community
  • Striving for Professionalism and efficiency
  • Enforcing compliance and quality

d) Training division K9 Instructor

  • Ensuring K9 Unit standards, SOP’s and policy’s are taught, applied and enforce through training sessions
  • Acquisition and preparation of new dogs for training
  • Preparing and forwarding of training, and schedules to the K9 unit Commander
  • Working in close relation with the K9 unit Commander to develop and maintain skill levels
  • Official Liaison between K9 unit and Training division
  • Responsible for legislative changes and amendments research and tutoring
  • Responsible for Tactical readiness as well as fitness and any training required by the COP or K9 Unit Commander.

e) K9 Unit – K9 Handler

  • Care, grooming, training and maintenance of the K9, and any other handlers K9 entrusted to him
  • Striving for Professionalism and efficiency
  • Establishment of good relations and ties within the community
  • Responsible use of K9’s


   1.1.        DAILY RETURNS

All officers shall submit the following documentation to their immediate supervisor for signature / collection on a daily basis:


1.1.1.   Attendance Register.

1.1.2.   Daily Productivity Sheet.

1.1.3.       Overtime Forms.

1.1.4.       Night Shift Allowance Forms.

1.1.5.       Pocket Book.

1.1.6.       Vehicle / Fuel Log Book.

1.1.7.       Incident Report Form.

1.1.8.       Road Defect Reports / Miscellaneous / Complaints

1.1.9.       Section 56 / 341 / Discontinue Notices.

The aforementioned documentation for the previous working day must be signed prior to resuming duty on the next consecutive working day.

1.2            WEEKLY RETURNS

All officers shall submit the following documentation to their immediate supervisor for signature / collection on a weekly basis:

1.2.1.   Attendance Register.

1.2.2.   Weekly Productivity Sheet.

1.2.3.       Overtime Forms.

1.2.4.       Night Shift Allowance Forms.

1.2.5.       Pocket Book.

1.2.6.       Training Register / Diary / Progress Report.

1.2.7.       Vehicle / Fuel Log Book.

1.2.8.       Incident Reports.

1.2.9.       Road Defect Reports / Miscellaneous / Complaints

The aforementioned documentation for the preceding Seven (7) days must be submitted by the end of each Monday of the week or, if a public holiday, the next working day thereafter.

1.3            MONTHLY RETURNS

1.3.1.   Attendance Register.

1.3.2.   Weekly Productivity Sheet.

1.3.3.   Overtime Forms.

1.3.4.       Night Shift Allowance Forms.

1.3.5.       Pocket Book.

1.3.6.       Training Register / Diary / Progress Report.

1.3.7.       Vehicle / Fuel Log Book.

1.3.8.       Incident Reports.

The aforementioned documentation must be submitted complete and signed by no later than the first working day of the following month.

2.         LEAVE / ABSENCE

2.1       SICK LEAVE

2.1.1.      All officers shall notify their immediate supervisor, if physically able to do so, per telephone or radio of intended absence due to illness / injury prior to or at the time duties would have commenced. If the supervisor is unavailable, then the applicable radio control Center must be notified and an entry made in the Occurrence Book.

2.1.2.      When an officer’s sick leave exceeds two consecutive working days, then such officer shall submit a medical certificate signed by his/her medical practitioner.

2.1.3.      Leave forms shall be submitted on the first working day that the officer resumes duty following the period of absence.

2.1.4.      Sick leave taken during weekdays from Wednesday to Friday shall preclude such officer from working overtime / time due on the Saturday AND Sunday of that same week.

2.1.5.      In the case of officers not reporting for overtime / special duties over weekends or public holidays, where such officer signed on the relevant duty list that he/she was available to work, then sub-paragraphs 2.1.1. and 2.1.2. and 2.1.3. shall apply.

2.1.6.      Where it is proved that an officer has abused his sick leave privileges, such officer shall be subjected to internal disciplinary procedures and may, if found guilty, forfeit his/her position on the unit permanently.


2.1.7.      Officers wishing to take their annual (12 days minimum) leave must ensure that such leave period has been noted on the applicable Annual Leave Prognosis for the Unit.

2.1.8.      No more than 40 percent (%) of staff compliment may be on leave simultaneously from January – November, unless approved prior to such date by the Colonel  of the Unit.

2.1.9.      No more than 50 percent (%) of staff compliment may be on leave simultaneously over the 01 December to 02 January period, unless approved prior to such date by the Colonel  of the Unit.

2.1.10.  The principle of “a-day-for-a-day” shall apply when officers wish to apply for annual or accumulated leave, i.e. five days leave shall require five day’s notice prior to the start of such leave, etc.

2.1.11.  Officers who have applied for leave must ensure that they have received a signed approval form PRIOR to embarking on such leave.

2.1.12.  Officers on leave who are absent from their residence over such leave period shall hand in his/her vehicle, fire-arms and ammunition prior to taking such leave to his/her supervisor for safekeeping. Or in the event where the firearm will not be accompanying him, or where safe storage will be questionable at the holiday destination.

2.1.13.  Officers shall make all necessary arrangements for the care and

maintenance of their kennel and dog/s prior to taking leave and shall

notify their relevant supervisor of the person assigned to execute said


2.1.14.  Officers failing to adhere to the aforementioned requirements shall be

subjected to    internal disciplinary procedures and may, if found guilty,

forfeit his/her position on the unit permanently.


2.1.15. Supervisors of officers who have been injured seriously whilst on duty shall ensure that the following procedure is applied:-

  1. Take into his/her custody all firearms, ammunition, equipment, vehicle, personal belongings, jewellery, books etc. of such officer for safekeeping.
  2. Make arrangements for the removal and safekeeping, feeding, care and maintenance of the dog/s of such officer until such officer is fit for duty.
  3. Go to the medical institution where the officers is transferred to and fill in the I.O.D forms immediately
  4. Obtain all relevant I.O.D. documents, registration number, Police Register Numbers and ensure delivery to the medical facility treating such officer, as soon as possible after notification of such injury/incident.
  5. Ensure that the spouse, partner, children or family of such officer is notified and supported in any way possible for the duration of such officer’s recovery.
  6. Maintain weekly contact with such officer and record & report progress of recovery to the Colonel of the Unit.
  7. Ensure that all relevant reports, entries, medical certificates, claim forms, etc. pertaining to the incident are completed, submitted, copied and filed to the relevant parties or applicable location.
  8. In the event where an officer is killed in action, dies on duty, or might die as a result of his injuries, the spouse will be collected by a Police vehicle and taken to the site, or hospital or morgue. The children will be taken to relatives or any of the family, but we will take responsibility until such time that arrangements can be made by the effected family themselves, and assist as far as possible.


2.1.16.  Officers who wish to take study leave must submit a leave application form together with all supporting documentation via their immediate supervisor to the Colonel  for approval, subject to the contractual policies of the Police and the Standard Conditions of Service for Police Employees.


2.1.17.  Officers are required to submit the relevant leave form together with supporting documentation pertaining to such leave and hand to their immediate supervisor prior to such leave period (where possible) or on the first day that such officer resumes duty following such leave.

2.1.18.  In the case of officers on special leave for treatment of substance abuse, the immediate supervisor shall ensure that the necessary / relevant documentation is completed.

2.4       UNPAID LEAVE

2.1.19.  The principle of “no-work-no-pay” shall apply in the following cases:-

  1. Strike Action.
  2. Refusal to work or to execute a lawful instruction.
  3. Absence from place of work without authorization.
  4. Abscondment (AWOL)
  5. Failure to submit signed and approved Leave Applications by prescribed due dates.
  6. Failure to submit Attendance Register at month-end.
  7. False / fraudulent overtime submissions.
  8. False / fraudulent entries in Attendance Register.
  9. No accumulated leave available or due to employee.
  10. At request of employee and subject to Police approval.
  11. No sick leave credit remaining for cycle (either full-pay or half-pay).

2.5       TIME DUE

2.1.20.  Where officers have made arrangements with the Colonel , via the relevant supervisor / Superintendent, to perform extra duties on a “time due” basis, then such time shall be taken off on the basis of “an-hour-for an hour”, adjusted accordingly to accommodate Sunday & Public Holiday time (double time).

2.1.21.  Time due shall be recorded on a “Time Due” form and shall be signed daily by the relevant supervisor.

2.1.22.  Hours worked shall be taken off before the end of the following consecutive calendar month. Hours not taken shall be forfeited, unless prior arrangements have been made with the Colonel  to carry such credit over to the next month cycle.

2.1.23.  Time due shall not be taken over weekends or public holidays when such officer was booked to work overtime.

2.1.24.  Time due taken consecutively shall not exceed 24 shift hours (three days).

2.7.6        Officers wishing to utilize hours due to them shall ensure that the relevant supervisor has been notified in advance of the intended absence.

2.1.25.  Officers using time-due hours shall be considered as being off-duty and on authorized leave. Police vehicles, etc. may not be utilized over this period, except to get to-and-from the officer’s kennel facility to feed and care for dogs kept there. Officers using Police vehicles whilst off-duty must notify the relevant radio control centre on each occasion.



2.1.26. Supervisors / Commanders must ensure that a three-monthly standby duty list is compiled and displayed on the relevant notice board in their region. Copies of same must be submitted to the following:

  1. Colonel  – K9 Unit.
  2. Regional radio control.
  3. Regional coordinators – Law Enforcement
  4. Shift Supervisors – K9 Unit

2.1.27.  Standby duty lists must contain the following information:

  1. Name & call sign of officers
  2. Name & specialty of dog (Narcotics / Explosives, etc.)
  3. Telephone number of officer’s residence, or where officer can be contacted.
  4. Cellular telephone number of officer.
  5. Residential address of officer.
  6. Times and dates when such officer is on standby.

2.1.28.  Officers on standby must ensure that the following requirements are met whilst on standby duty:

  1. Officer does not consume ANY alcohol or strong liquor.
  2. Officer does not consume medication which may affect his/her central nervous system or which may lead to drowsiness.

c.         Officer’s vehicle has sufficient fuel for at least 4 hours driving.

  1. Officer is near to residence or at home throughout the standby period.
  2. Officer’s uniform and equipment (torches, firearms, bullet-proof vest, etc) are ready for use.
  3. Officer is near to telephone AND two-way radio at all times (radio may be off).
  4. Officer is able to be underway to scene within ten minutes.
  5. No civilian clothing may be worn on callout, except if directed by the officer in charge.
  6. Should the officer become unavailable, then such officer must IMMEDIATELY notify their supervisor of the situation and furnish acceptable reasons.
  7. All senior personnel will be entitled to claim a standby allowance



2.1.29. Officers who make use of Police kennel facilities to house their dog/s must adhere to the following rules:

  1. Strictly one dog per kennel at all times. But small dogs may be kept in larger amounts.
  2. All choke chains must be removed from dogs whilst in kennel.
  3. Kennels must be cleaned daily at start of handler’s shift.
  4. Water receptacles must ALWAYS be full and contain only clean water, buckets must be tipped over every day.
  5. Kennels must ALWAYS be locked, whether occupied or not.
  6. No agitation of own or other dogs in kennel facility is allowed.
  7. Clean, dry food (as issued) must be provided daily at the END of shift. All food remaining will be disposed of.
  8. Kennels, food- and water bowls must be disinfected at least once per week with an approved disinfectant.
  9. Hose pipes and fittings must be rolled up immediately by the last person after use and stored in safe place to prevent theft or damage by sunlight or dogs.
  10. Damage to kennel facility must be reported immediately and repaired as soon as possible.
  11. Litter, foreign objects, non-essential equipment and old food must be removed daily.
  12. Sick dogs (not necessarily your own) must be reported immediately.
  13. Report any abuse of dogs immediately to relevant supervisor.
  14. No unauthorized personnel or persons allowed in kennel area.
  15. Visitors to be accompanied at all times whilst at Unit.
  16. All dogs must be treated with respect and reasonable caution.
  17. No storage of unrelated items allowed in kennels or surrounding area.
  • Aggressive dogs to be kept on leash at all times, except on Unit grounds, in the k9 runs.
  • Placards must be displayed on each occupied kennel with the following:
    • Name, sex and age of dog.
  1. Specialty & training level.
  2. Diet and aggression level of dog.
  3. Handlers name & Call sign


5.1       DIPPING

5.1.1        All handlers will ensure that the following dipping program is strictly adhered to prevent unnecessary illness to dogs due to parasites:

a.         WINTER:                  Dogs must be dipped once every two weeks

b.         SUMMER:                  Dogs must be dipped once a week, or after exposure to long grass or
dense bush.

Handlers must try not to dip dogs on extremely cold days or during overcast / rainy weather. Dogs are preferably dipped on clear, warm or hot days and not in the late afternoon or at night.


5.2.1        Officers must ensure that the dip is fresh enough for effective use and that sufficient amount has been mixed to ensure correct ratio of chemicals to water.

5.2.2.   Officers must ensure that all foreign objects, litter, insects,

leaves or other debris are removed from the dip on a daily


5.2.3.      Officers must ensure that they wash their hands after dipping to prevent transfer of chemicals to themselves.

5.2.4.      The dip must not be utilized as a swimming pool for initiation purposes, or to cool dogs off during hot weather. Rather make use of clean water in this regard.

5.2.5.      Dogs must be inspected daily for signs of poor health, parasites or injuries. This includes:

  1. Head (ears, eyes, teeth, gums, nose)
  2. Body (flanks, chest, ribs, stomach, reproductive organs, anus, tail)
  3. Legs (fore, rear, paws, pads, claws)
  4. Faeces (consistency, parasites, smell)
  5. Urine (blood, colour, smell, amount)
  6. Skin (hot-spot, eczema, cuts, bruises, parasites, hair-loss)
  7. Temperature (fever, abnormal cold, shivering, hyper- or hypothermia
  8. Mucous membranes (eyes and gums – pale, normal)

5.2.6.      Dogs must be brushed and raked on a daily basis to prevent overheating, poor skin and fur condition, to detect parasites and to check for injuries.

5.2.7.      Dogs must be bathed (washed) with an approved shampoo at least once a month, or immediately after abnormal exposure to pollutants such as oil, grease or chemicals or when dog exudes an unpleasant odour.

5.2.8.      Claws must only be trimmed with an approved clipper, and only when the claws appear too long. Care must be exercised in order not to cut claws too short, thereby injuring the nerve in the base of the claw.

5.2.9.      All dogs will be checked with a full medical examination done, vaccination and inoculation will also be done on this date by the vet on call at the beginning of every year

5.2.10.  Dogs must not be exposed to excessive amounts of water,

whether during play or not, in order to minimize the risk of

kidney damage, kennel diseases and hot-spot.

Do not spray dogs with the hose pipe, since this can also lead to anxiety-aggression and fear of water.

6.         PENALTIES

Any officer or handler who makes himself guilty of abuse, neglect, cruelty or other unethical behaviour towards his/her own or other dogs shall be subjected to internal disciplinary procedures, as well as facing possible criminal charges under the Animal Cruelty Act. If found guilty of the aforementioned acts or omissions, officers may face permanent suspension from the Unit.


7.1.      MEDIA

No officer or handler is authorized to approach the media, grant any interview or pass any comment or opinion concerning the working activities of the Police or the Canine Unit. Any media release shall be authorized only by the Media Liaison Office of the Police.

7.2      THE PUBLIC

No member of the Canine Unit is authorized to pass on any operational or managerial policy or information. All documents, forms, manuals, registers, instructions, standing orders or correspondence of either the Police or the Canine Unit may not be made available to any member of the public.


No officer may disclose any information in respect of any operation, project, incident, or task to any person or organization. Any officer who does so may face criminal charges for obstruction of justice, judicial process or hindering or obstructing the Chief of Police in the execution of his duties, as well as possible internal disciplinary action and subsequent suspension from the Canine Unit.


Special provisions for K9 unit officers pertaining the utilisation of pocket books.

  1. All the particulars of a narcotic find, explosives find, tracked with success or an patrol dog application must be recorded.
  2. Every visit to the Veterinarian must be signed in the pocket book, by the Vet.



This section prides itself on it’s high regard and necessity for power and speed, in order to encourage members to stay fit and healthy and to build power we will allow two hours per week in total to be spent at gym. A valid Gym contract must be produced or any other form a validation that will be acceptable to the commander. This may in no way interfere with operational effectiveness and must not be abused. The commander has the right to revoke or impede this privilege at any time without any discussion or reason.


A. Utilization of properly trained police service, dogs represent a highly cost effective and reliable asset to law enforcement personnel, by utilizing the canine’s acute olfactory and hearing senses as well as guarding and maternal instincts. The police service dog is a force multiplier; it also provides a psychological deterrent by their mere presence at the scene of a potentially volatile confrontation, conflict or disturbance.

B. Areas of potential deployment for K9 teams may include, but are not limited to:

  • Building Searches
    Open Area Searches
    Evidence Searches / Article Recovery
    Tracking or Trailing
    Narcotics / Controlled Substances Detection
    Back-Up for Violent / Potentially Violent Calls
    Back-Up for high risk Arrest
    Pursuit / Apprehension of suspects on Foot
    Protection of Law Enforcement Personnel, Police property and human life.

Crowd Control, nature is to be avoided at all cost, no K9 unit member may interfere or be used against a crowd conforming to the stipulations in the act. K9 units may only dominate a cordoned off area with strict access control to protect a crime scene or a building or structure in this regard.


  1. Experience has taught that a lot of the success in the training and use of dogs for police purposes will depend on the right type of person being selected to be trained.
  2. The primary consideration is that the member has to be a dog lover.
  3. It has to be clearly put to applicants that, besides the employment of his dog as an aid, he will be responsible for the housing, feeding and cleaning of the animal, as well as the general well-being f his dog.
  4. It is expected of him to treat minor illnesses.
  5. Dog handlers /masters have to show extreme patience with their dogs. Besides endless patience and understanding, they have to be mentally capable of grasping the familiar instincts of dogs.
  6. Every dog has individual characteristics and members have to be able to recognize and develop the characteristics of the particular dog entrusted to him in practice.
  7. They have to reveal a large amount of initiative and have ample talent to develop themselves as efficient members of the dog section.
  8. Dog handlers/masters have to be physically suitable, without any physical handicaps of whatever nature that would make them unsuitable to undergo strenuous training or to follow tracks with their dogs over rigorous terrain.
  9. It is just as important that the members do not have any allergies for animals or animal hair.


  1. It must be understood that, unless a member of the dog section is found to be unfit for his task, he will not be permitted to be transferred at will to another section or unit.
  2. It is in the interest of the POLICE that members who do not measure up to requirements during training, are transferred to another section as soon as possible, substandard training will not be allowed.
  3. As soon as it becomes known that a dog handler/master intends to resign from his post, or if it is being considered to relieve a dog handler /master of his post for some or other valid reason, the regional head may relieve him of his duties after consultation with the COP as well as the commanding officer of the dog unit. The regional head must make timely arrangements with the commanding officer for a replacement in the case of a dog master, or in the case of handlers of other dogs, make arrangements for the redistribution of the dogs to another handler within his region or, for the return of the dogs to the POLICE Dog School.


Where a handler has worked a substantial time in the K9 unit and he resigns and asks to take his dog with him, the following criteria will be used and will apply to pension dogs as well. A candidate for becoming a pension dog is normally a dog that has limited use left and is become old and slow.

The dog will be sent for a full medical and this report will be submitted to the commander.

The commander will make a recommendation to the COP with a detailed report detailing the following:

1)      The age of the dog

2)      The physical condition of the dog

3)      The dogs level of performance

4)      The dogs possible future utilization

5)      Recommendation

Pensioned dog will not receive any Police assistance after being pensioned.

Fair Production Policy

It will be expected that a K9 handler conform to a fundamental production criteria, for minimum work performed per day, by benchmarking the criteria.

  • By either issuing a minimum of ten prosecution documents per day or
  • By arresting one schedule one offence for a day or
  • By arresting three schedule 2/3 offences for a day

This will be considered to be minimum production criteria when benchmarking performance.


A. The K9 Commander is responsible for the general supervision of those K9 teams assigned to support police functions within the Department.

B. A supervisor at the rank of Superintendent or higher will be assigned as the K9 Unit Operational Commander, and shall assume the responsibility of supervising and administering the day-to-day operational requirements and administration of operations of the K9 Unit. The K9 Unit supervisor will report to the K9 Unit Commander.

C. The K-9 Unit Field trainers (K9 Ops Commander, and Unit Commander) shall be responsible for the following.

  1. General supervision of the K9 teams
  2. Procurement of any Dogs for any reason will be in consultation with him
  3. Appointing and maintaining a dedicated and accredited trainer for the K9 teams will be the responsibility of the K9 unit Commander – a memo will be kept on file signed by the K9 Unit Commander, concerning this individual /s being suitable qualified and the official departmental K9 trainer, and will be known as the K9 Instructor that will report to the director training and on a ad hoc basis to the Commander K9 unit.
  4. A performance report will be sent to the COP, after every course to gauge his personal and the POLICE Academy and it’s K9 Training divisions performance. With regard to strategic matters and quality of training.
  5. Review and inspection of the training facility, bi-annually, and of all K9 teams training records and weekly training as well as progress records along with the Director training to review training within the department.
  6. Inspection of all issued K9 training and equipment related on a regular basis
  7. Ordering of all food rations, canine specific equipment and medical care as needed
  8. Coordinating all community relations and K9 demonstrations
  9. Assisting in the training of other Law Enforcement Agency’s K-9 Units with the approval of the COP
  10. Approval and coordination with other Law Enforcement Agency’s their requests for assistance using this agency’s K9 Unit, or k9’s
  11. Coordination and assignment of K9 teams in support of other roles as he deems necessary, or entertain requests from other department’s

K9 Handlers deploying:

D. In the absence of the on-duty K9 Unit supervisor, and when not assigned to a specific detail, K9 teams shall operate under the supervision of the on-duty K9 Superintendent, or in his/her absence, the most senior k9 supervisor for the area where they are assigned.

E. The individual K9 handler is authorize to use their assigned canine for the apprehension of a suspect(s). It shall and will always be the responsibility of each individual handler to ensure that practical safety precautions are taken at the time of deployment. Including a possible briefing to other law enforcement personnel if and where time permits, and within reason explaining the canine’s abilities and limitation.

F. In circumstances where the use of a K9 team is being considered, the final decision to deploy a K9 shall rest with the individual K9 handler, as only the handler truly knows his dog, and in what state his dog is in physically, mentally and how his abilities and limitations could be put to good use or will render him useless under the prevailing conditions at hand. By deploying a K9, there is always potential risk factors that can, and cannot be seen, both physical and mentally. Therefore the call to commit will be at the handler’s prerogative only, to safely and legally perform the task at hand.

G. Once the K9 handler has made the decision to deploy his patrol dog, all other parties concerned will be obligated to respond to instructions from the K9 handler.  The K9 unit shall assume the responsibility for the control and operational management of the scene pertaining to the search and cordon, until they are properly relieved by a supervisor from the k9 unit or finished, or upon completion hand over to the detectives or who’ ever claims the scene with a successful find.


A. Building and Area Searches

Canines can be effectively used to search areas and buildings for hidden suspects that might be detected by scent or sound. Canines can also be utilized to searching open areas for, suspects or evidence /articles that are suspected to be part of evidence or that may have been discarded.

When a suspect has fled the scene of a crime and a canine is en route, member should not pursue unless a reasonable chance of successfully apprehending a suspect is imminent and exists. If the pursuing personnel lose sight of the offender, the pursuit should be immediately terminated, and a call for a perimeter to be formed must be made immediately to seal off the area, to secure exit and entry routes, the exact spot where the suspect/s were lost must be marked, and the direction they are fleeing in must be pointed out. Until such time the K9 teams arrive. Once again the success of the k9 track will depend on the personnel initially involved in the initial pursuit, they should note the last direction of travel, obstacles or possible hiding places that they might have seen or know of, and other potential hazards, man holes without covers, trenches, power lines, vagrants and squatters so that they may brief the K9 team upon arrival.

The initial responding unit involved in the pursuit, the on-scene supervisor or senior present should determine if the crime is significant enough to warrant a K9 team call-out or response, a K9 apprehension is considered to be extreme force, and is dealt with in the category as GBH, and the officer will be charged in that manner should it only become apart that the means of arrest used was not justifiable. It shall be the responsibility of this individual who initiates the call-out/response to in a timely manner ensure that appropriate perimeter control is established and maintained. No K9 tracker team will be allowed to track alone, so in the even that there are no K9 back up trackers available an officer will have to accompany the K9 handler, otherwise they are under orders not to track at all. This and the time it will take for a k9 to be dispatched must be taken into account before calling out a K9 team, the K9 team will be in charge of the scene and if officers fail to comply, then they may seize their activities and have the k9 unit supervisors called to give direction. In the event that the K9 officer is ordered to go ahead against the caution, or directions of the k9 handler the most senior person in charge will be held fully accountable should anything go wrong, or any person get hurt by such action ordered.

Prior to starting any search of a building by a K9 team, a series of verbal warning and commands shall be made by the handler, if practical and safe to do so piro- technical devices may be used in conjunction with a tactical entry. A suggested warning is as follows:

“This is the Police Canine Unit. Anyone inside the building, announce yourself now and surrender or a police dog will be used to find you.”

This warning may be modified to suit the situation by the handler and only, serves as a sample of an appropriate warning. The handler may choose to have this or other warnings issued via public address systems or by other deputies as necessary or practical.

If, after a reasonable amount of time passes and no response is heard or no person(s) surrender themselves, the handler may release the canine into the building to begin the search, the handler may choose to conduct the search on-lead or off, as appropriate to the situation.

Prior to starting any search of a building or open area, the handler will determine if additional personnel are to enter the area with the K9 team. Whenever possible other K9 Unit personnel should be used to back up and assist in the search, if this is not practical any law enforcement officer may be used provided that the handler brief the personnel in the procedures of K9 searches and apprehension if and where the situation allows.

The primary duty of personnel supporting the K9 team in a search shall be the protection of handler and to take custody of any person located by the canine, at the direction of the handler.

B. Tracking / Trailing of Criminal Suspects and Lost Persons

Ground scent tracking and wind scent trailing can be useful for following fleeing suspects or lost individuals when the presence of other persons, vehicles or extreme weather conditions do not impair the scent. Personnel requesting the assistance of a K9 team to assist in this type, of search should secure an appropriate perimeter to avoid contamination, trampling and have alternative sent samples available from the lost person if possible for the scent trail.

If a bloodhound or (Doberman/Bloodhound) DB is used to track or trail any suspect that can be considered dangerous (including but not limited to all felony suspects), a patrol dog should always be used to back up the bloodhound, otherwise the hound may not be deployed at all… If a patrol dog is not on the scene the bloodhound should wait for one to arrive or get authorization from the K9 supervisor to begin the track without the aid of a patrol dog.

C. Crowd Control and Civil Disturbances resulting in officer rescues.

In the case of civil disturbances, labour disputes, and unrest, taxi violence, school violence or other types of non-routine crowd control, the K9 Unit will not be deployed unless specifically authorized by the K9 Operational Superintendent. Or higher command authority. K9’s are not to be used against unarmed crowds at all. The Public order policing unit of the POLICE must be called in.” Routine” crowd control situations, constitutes the protection of a cordoned off section with access control that may be protected with K9’s like a cash in transit site with cash and firearms all over, this is permitted. Crowd control of a public violence nature, such as large fights and similar situations shall be individually assessed by the handler as to the appropriateness of using the canine legally. This issue could be nullified in the event where an officer/s are attacked or trapped in a crowd then only the necessary violence and force may be used to open a path and get the officers out. By no means does this type of deployment extend to a situation where there is a shortage of personnel to handle a crowd of any nature, K9 are not a primary measurer or means of crowd control ever.

When and where practical, while deploying the canine in a large crowd control situation, the handler shall wear appropriate tactical/safety equipment, to include but not be limited to a tactical vest.

D. Pursuit and Apprehension

Pursuit and apprehension of fleeing suspects makes use of the canine’s speed and manoeuvrability to affect a capture without the use of certain deadly force. K9 apprehensions are by nature potentially dangerous, some cases have ended in amputations, dismemberment, and death, so this is not ruled out. K9 pursuits and apprehensions shall be conducted at the handler’s discretion, for they are also dangerous, the officer can get ambushed, fall into a pit, hole or get pulled of a building etc. Assisting personnel shall allow the K9 team primary access to the area and path of flight, prior to conducting any search if practical.

E. Tactical Deployments

The use of K9 teams to support tactical operations must be reviewed and approved by the K9 Unit operational supervisor, or higher authority.

K9 Unit personnel shall be consulted prior to deployment as to the appropriateness of using the canine and the best method of using the K9 team(s).

All K9 Unit personnel involved in tactical deployments shall wear all issued tactical equipment for the duration of the deployment.

Out of area tactical deployments in aid or upon request by POLICE shall be reviewed and approved by the K9 Unit supervisor or supervisor on duty prior to deployment. The COP shall be notified of such operations and may suspend such operations at his discretion.

F. General Search Guidelines

Searches may be conducted on or off leash at the discretion of the handler. The handler must be able to maintain control of their assigned canine for the duration of the search.


A. Types of Controlled Substances

Handler’s equipped with certified narcotics canine’s are prepared to assist in the detection of the following controlled substances:

  • Cocaine HCI and Cocaine Base (Powered and “Crack” Cocaine)
    Other controlled substance containing derivatives of the above

B. Areas of Deployment

Narcotics detector canines may be deployed in the following situations:

Searches during vehicle stops, take note that temperature on tarmac reaches into the 55 degrees Celsius and burns blisters on the dogs feet, as well as if they are in a kennel with no air conditioning they will suffer heat exhaustion within half an hour, the dog cools down through his nose, mouth and feet, so it stands to reason that if these areas are un dually affected by heat, or exhaust fumes the dog will be rendered un- effective, therefor the k9 handler will determine his dogs condition and will leave if temperature and conditions do not favour deployment. A road block is also a potentially toxic place for a dog as his scent is 1200 time more acute than that of a human. And to protect his nose the dog starts salivating, shutting down the dogs’ scent capability. The handlers will signal time out and with draw, this takes place after an hour of work.

Upon calling out a detection dog it is within the understanding that, the officer who had places the call will be held responsible for having established probable cause, enough for a Search Warrant. Drug interdiction in public areas, poses several problems at mass social public gatherings, and the use of K9’s at such venues must be reiterated to the event managers and co-ordinators – that these detection dog are nonviolent and proofed to be able to work amongst the public.

C. Possessing Controlled Substance for Training.

It shall be the policy of the K9 unit that every person on the narcotics detection team will have to apply for a permit to keep drugs, through the department of health, for training purposes, all these drugs will be controlled by the master K9 trainer and who shall posses controlled substances for training purposes, with the following exceptions.

That the controlled Substances have been seized by a Bona Fide law enforcement agency and are legally possessed and made available for the purposes of training.

All other narcotics related training shall be conducted using scented articles provided by a person possessing a valid permit, and through the use of pseudo narcotics, MEDDS and other cent traced and vapour strips conduct training. Any handler may possess and use pseudo narcotics.

Any k9 Handler can be asked to give a urine sample at any time and may not refuse to be tested, if he does a departmental investigation will evidently follow.

All narcotics will be kept in a designated safe and only the Master trainer will have a key, to both the narcotics and explosives samples safe and no one else for whatever reason will be allowed to handle or take possession, or will attempt to order the master trainer to hand over such keys for whatever reason, without contacting the Unit Commander first.

VI. General Operational Procedures

On duty K9 teams shall respond to in progress crimes within the EMM without specific dispatch and shall assist Regional Units in any potentially violent situation where the use of a canine may be of service. As a general rule, when dispatch is made aware of a developing incident that a K9 may be used (ie. foot pursuit, vehicle pursuit, robbery, lost children etc.) the dispatcher will contact the K9 Superintendent in charge of operations as soon as possible and put K9 members on standby for possible call out.

As a general rule, K9 teams shall not respond as a primary unit the responsibility of completing routine reports or to address non-priority calls for service. k9 teams should advise communications centre personnel if they are dispatched inappropriately.

K9 teams must advise radio and the appropriate shift supervisors when they are initially in-service and available for calls when entering a region.

K9 teams shall assist any law enforcement agency operating within the confines of the law with canine services either as a “self-dispatched deployment” or at the request of the other agency. It shall not be necessary to obtain the authorization of the K9 unit supervisor to assist these agency’s when the K9 team is on duty and available for calls – for instance a security officer attending a house alarm, or a fidelity vehicle asking for assistance with suspicious vehicle and people etc..

K9 teams can respond to the area of any foot or vehicle pursuits to assist in apprehension search or other deployment. K9 teams involved in a vehicle pursuit shall attempt to engage any fleeing suspect using the canine prior to engaging in a foot pursuit or other potentially dangerous contacts with a suspect.


A. If an apprehension involves a dog bite the following procedure shall be followed:

The injured person shall be assessed, and if required be afforded immediate medical care on the scene, if not necessary as soon as possible.

The on-duty supervisor and the K9 Unit supervisor shall be notified. A copy of the report documenting the bite shall be complete by the end of the following day and forwarded to the k9 unit Commander for review. Copies of the report shall be immediately forwarded to the following personnel:

The K9 Unit supervisor or supervisor on duty. The Director specialised services.

The canine involved in the bite shall be taken to the contract veterinarian for an examination within 2 days of the bite. A copy of the medical certificate clearing the dog of any injury shall be forwarded to the K9 shift commander for record purposes, the original shall be placed in the dog’s medical file.

Photographs shall be taken if possible, of the bite by a department field investigator, preferably the field investigator assigned to the K9 unit. All photographs shall be taken following cleaning of the wound area so that the photographs accurately reflect the extent of injury in a non-prejudicial manner. Copies of the photos and the negatives shall be held in evidence.


A. All K9 Unit personnel shall be required to certify his or her dog by the department Head K9 trainer and Unit commander.

B. Before any dog is authorized to be sent for certification at POLICE, for a working permit it must be screened by the K9 Unit commander.

c. Only dogs with active valid working permits will be allowed on duty, or deployed for active duty.

d. The K9 trainer and K9 Unit Commander can limit the scope under which a dog will be deployed.

e. Place him on Light duty to recover from injuries, or place him on long rest.

f. No dog whether certified or with a working permit will work until it has been tested and approved by the K9 unit Commander.

g. All K9 Unit personnel shall attend weekly maintenance training with their assigned canine trainers and may not miss any training.

h. Field training is encouraged under supervision and with permission of the K9 OPS Supt.

C. All senior K9 handlers shall maintain in service training, keep files on their dogs and use pre-approved training forms. These files shall be submitted on a bi-annual basis for inspection and inclusion in the dog’s permanent file and for audit and review purposes.

D. Monthly K9 activity reports shall be submitted to the Unit Commander by the relevant K9 Superintendent.

E. K9 Unit training reports, field deployment and narcotics reports will not be removed from the permanent files without the specific permission of the K9 Unit supervisor. These records are the property of the department and not the individual.

Procedure; Training programs

The dog unit consists of 3 divisions that work together as one unit to serve the public. It has many sectors that training is given in.

No Item Time
1 A Weekly training program for patrol dogs 1 day per week
   B Weekly training program for narcotic detection dogs 1 day per week
   C Weekly training program for explosive detection dogs 1 day per week
  D Weekly training program for tracking dogs 1 day per week
2 A Re-training program for patrol dogs 5 days
   B Re-training program for narcotic detection dogs 5 days
   C Re-training program for explosive detection dogs 5 days
   D Re-training program for tracking dogs 5 days
3 A Quarterly evaluation of patrol dogs 3 days quarterly
   B Quarterly evaluation of narcotic detection dogs 3 days quarterly
   C Quarterly evaluation of explosive detection dogs 3 days quarterly
   D Quarterly evaluation of tracking dogs 3 days quarterly
4 A Working certificate for patrol dogs 1 day
   B Working certificate for narcotic detection dogs 1 day
   C Working certificate for explosive detection dogs 1 day
   D Working certificate for tracking dogs 1 day
5 Patrol dog course 14 weeks plus tactical 1 18 weeks
6 Narcotic detection dog course 12 weeks
7 Explosive detection dog course 12 weeks
8 Tactical Police dog handlers course 8 weeks
9 Puppy prepping (in service training) Ongoing 3 hours daily



Donation dog prepping (in service training)Advanced Tracking and counter ambush courseVisual Tracking and survival courseReaction and SWAT courses

Night time operations, low light, GPS, compass direction finding, elimination and signaling

VIP protection, CQB, Knife Fighting, and counter assault teams, hostage rescue, rapid intervention course

Ongoing 3 hours daily6 weeks3 weeks1 week /2 weeks

3 day

3 weeks

These divisions are:

Working Dog-

  1. Patrol dogs

2.   Tactical dogs

Scent detection and discrimination-

1.   Narcotic detection dogs

2.   Explosives detection dogs

3.   Tracking

Weekly training program Patrol dogs


During this training program all the patrol, dogs must be trained in each of the different disciplines. Patrol dog is the first line of defence in the war against crime. These dogs are used in the most extreme of circumstances where the danger to an officer has become life threatening. They are used to apprehend suspects with the minimum use of force and can thus be used instead of a firearm in many instances.


Training in the following, disciplines will be presented:


·         Basic obedience

·         Advanced obedience

·         Direction control

·         Squaring

·         Retrieval

·         Man work

·         House and building search

·         Field search

·         Tracking

·         Scent discrimination

·         Agility

·         Dog and handler fitness

Weekly training program for Narcotic detection dogs

During this training program, all narcotic dogs must be trained in the detection of various substances located in various areas. This will include buildings, cars, objects, fields etc. It is important to know that a dog must be trained specifically in each substance to be detected. This is a time consuming program.

With the development of new designer drugs, training narcotic dogs is an on-going process. As schools are a key point in the on-going struggle against drugs, it is of great importance that this training not be neglected.

Weekly training program for explosive detection dogs

This training is similar in concept to narcotic detection since the same training principles are used. Except for the fact that: – retrieval of the detected object – is “NOT” ever encouraged. The level of danger in this field is also much higher than in other detection disciplines. The officers trained in this fieldwork hand in hand with the POLICE Bomb Disposal Units. It is a very specialized field and officers need to be informed of all new threats that may arise. Seeing the politically volatile situation that the world is experiencing, trained explosive detection has become a very important element of law enforcement.

Weekly training for tracking dogs

This discipline is an extremely under-utilized field yet extremely valuable. Not only are these dogs used for the apprehension of suspected criminals, but they are also an invaluable resource in the search for missing persons. This training is very time consuming as only one dog can be trained at a time. Dogs must also be trained in all weather and time conditions. Also tracks must be laid and then left for at least a ½ hour before training can commence.

When suspects discard of items such as video machines, appliances etc they also can be tracked by the use of tracking dogs.

Re-training program for patrol dogs

This program is for all dogs that, during the weekly training session, were identified as substandard. During this program special attention will be paid to the identified areas and where improvement is needed. At the end of the week the dog as well as the handler will be evaluated to determine if the identified problem was addressed.

Re-training program for narcotic detection dogs

This program is for all dogs that, …….

Re-training program for explosive detection dogs

This program is for all dogs that, …….

Re-training program for tracking dogs

This program is for all dogs that,….

I think you get the picture; it’s all focused on identifying, and correcting of substandard exercises, and corrective measures. The burden stays on the handler but the required resources are available to “fix” the substandard behaviour accordingly.

Quarterly evaluation of patrol dogs

Every 3 months all dogs must be evaluated so as to determine their level of competence. This evaluation is of the utmost importance since all dogs must be at the same acceptable standard and level of competence. No substandard animal can be allowed to function in an operational capacity. The result of allowing substandard dogs to work operational can result in civil litigation matter that can be avoided otherwise. Records must be kept of all evaluation session as this can provide vital information in court cases.

·         Quarterly evaluation of narcotic detection dogs

·         Every 3 months all dogs must be evaluated……

·         Quarterly evaluation of explosive detection dogs

·         Every 3 months all dogs must be evaluated…….

·         Quarterly evaluation of tracking dogs

·         Every 3 months all dogs must be evaluated…..

·         Working certificate for patrol dogs

The importance of Certification

I believe that you cannot manage if you cannot measure, so it stands to reason that you have to create a measuring criteria for the dog, it must be fair and strict

The quarterly evaluation is conducted by the senior training officer and only after another assessment by a member of the POLICE can and will a working permit is issued. Without this working permit the dog will be operating illegally in terms of the law. If an officer utilizes his dog without a valid working permit his action will be deemed illegal and not within the perimeters of his duties. This will result in unnecessary civil and criminal action. The same rules and guidelines will also apply to:

·         Working certificate for narcotic detection dogs

·         The quarterly evaluation is conducted by the senior training officer…..

·         Working certificate for explosive detection dogs

·         The quarterly evaluation is conducted by the senior training officer….

·         Working certificate for tracking dogs

·         The quarterly evaluation is conducted by the senior training officer….



A. Any certified handler not meeting or continuing to miss practice will be posted for a two weeks retraining session. If either him or the dog do not make the course. They will have to be called in and a assessment will be done, if necessary the handler will receive a new dog, if the handler is a loss, then he will be given options.

B. The handler(s) assigned to the K9 Unit shall obtain dog food and other supplies from the department designated stores only.

C. The handler is responsible for ensuring that their canine is maintained in a healthy environment. This includes proper feeding and routine physical inspections, grooming and veterinarian check-ups.

The handler is responsible for ensuring that their canine receives prompt medical care from either the contract veterinarian or contract emergency veterinarian services. The handler is responsible for filing in the prescribed medical evaluation form all medical records and receipts in their canine’s medical records file and bringing it to the office of the Commander for immediate payment.

D. The handler will ensure that no unauthorized people tease or otherwise harass their canine or other department canines, unless specifically directed to do so in a training environment. The handler will report and at the discretion of the Commander charge any individual that willingly and purpose fully interfere a police dog, interims of the police act.

E. The handler will ensure than nobody pets or attempts to pet a department canine without the specific permission of the dog’s handlers.

F. Unauthorized exhibitions of the dog’s apprehension and engagement abilities are forbidden.

G. Handler’s will ensure that law enforcement personnel working in the immediate proximity of the police service canine shall heed all directions given by the handler and that their actions will not compromise the safety of the handler or the deployment mission. The handler may stop and cancel the deployment at any time if they notice a significant safety or tactical violation. Therefore if he has concerns and doubts about safety he may withdraw. These cancellations and the causes shall be immediately reported to the K9 Unit supervisor.

H. It is the prerogative of the individual K9 handler to use a Tri Tronic s collar during normal training, certification and deployment.

Common scent detection control problems

(p) Equipment

Collar (nylon) – not metal
leash – 2 metres
training aids
disposable gloves or tongs
reward article

(q) Communication

Command the dog like you do in training” SEARCH” leash work, body movement ,gestures, voice tones and variety of each should be noted it could make the dog nervous

(r) Reading the dog

Interpreting dog’s indication resting the dog when his interest wanes/fatigue
observing the dog at all times interest vs. indication

(s) Distractions

People, vehicles, movement, food stuffs, animals or animal scent, noise
fuel fumes, chemical fumes, garbage, Coffee, brake fluid.

Common problems;

  • Progressing too fast with degrees of difficulty
    Improper pattern
    Not genuine/enthusiastic induced by handler
    Too much talking in the room, or to dog leading to false “SIT”
    Dog’s lack of interest, due to shock or distractions and contamination


A. All members of the K9 Unit shall be permitted to wear the optional uniform as described below:

a)      Embroidery of the official k9 head, and shield on the uniform is permitted, due the practicality when working with animals that jump yp and destroy the insignia as per normal fixture.

b)      The k9 unit may wear a navy blue T-shirt on training days, to save on uniform, and to be more comfortable, this will be an embroidered t-shirt with the official k9 head and POLICE shield on, as well as training gear, running shorts, as will be required by the training for the day.

c)      The wearing of golf caps with uniform, will be encourage during parades and other nonspecific duty’s, but during deployment with a K9 this will not be mandatory

d)     Call out Uniform. A handler may elect to wear a department approved “Raid Jacket – Dry Mack” or similar jacket or windbreaker when called out to a deployment during off-duty hours. The exception to this are call- outs for tactical deployments where the POLICE. Uniform shall be worn.

e)      Tactical K9 Gear. The handler may elect to wear a nylon type duty belt and extra associated gear to arrive at a hands free situation in lieu of regulation gear due to the nature of his occupation.

f)        Each K9 handler will be issued the following equipment and will be responsible for the care and maintenance of this equipment:

1) Grooming kit consisting of

a) De-matting comb

b) T Rake

c) Scissors

d) Nail clipper

2) Lead 1.2 double handle

3) Puppy Line (10 m) rope

4) Choke chain (or canvas halter/ collar)

5) Kong

6) Wooden dumb bell

7) Muzzle (leather agitation)

8) 2 Steel bowls 5 L

9) First aid kit

10) Leather agitating collar

H. Load Bearing Equipment. A military style bearing harness and belt assembly may be worn by handlers to provide for additional storage of equipment and availability of drinking water on extended deployments, when approved by the unit Commander

I. In climate Weather Clothing.. It shall be the responsibility of the individual K9 handier to dress appropriately for climatic conditions. This includes the maintenance, and use of cold weather clothing. The following types of cold weather clothing are approved for use by the K9 teams:

Sweatshirt’s, to keep hydrated on a track, provided they are solid blue in colour
Insulated coveralls; provided they meet or exceed departmental specifications
Insulated boots, Insulated gloves

All K9 Unit equipment shall be returned when the handler leaves the service of the K9 Unit.

XI. Non K9 Crew on K9 vehicles

  1. K9 Unit personnel must obtain prior approval from the K9 Superintendent operations, for a civilian to ride along. Law enforcement ride-along, must be approved though the chain-of-command shall and be permitted; However, the handler shall be responsible for the conduct and safety of the ride-along and shall not permit them to assist on any deployment training unless specifically authorized and overseen by the master trainer or by the K9 Unit supervisor




What is a SOP?

By Definition, it is the fundamental written instruction sets, which dictate multilateral action between role players in the event of a catastrophe, anomaly of nature or an event that will cause chaos or civil unrest. The focus is on role and function designation, to reduce the reaction time and create efficacy with synergised sets of instructions, for each category or event complimenting each other.


Officers may at any time be called upon to respond to, normal bomb treats or major emergency situations that could involve criminal acts such as bombings, hostage situations, suspects of foot, or natural or man-made disasters. To ensure that the Department responds as promptly and efficiently as possible with the greatest benefit to public and own safety, Standard operating procedures have been established for these occurrences, so that a unilateral procedure exists between all departments and sub units when dealing with incidents of epic proportion or magnitude. Officers are expected to familiarize themselves with these procedures and to respond to situations in accordance with them. By pre assigning fields of responsibility and authority all situations can be dealt with in a formal fundamental way.

High on the list of most imminent threats would be terrorist activists or fundamentalist groups. We will therefore deal with the most obvious threats first.

This Standard Operating Procedure shall define the authority, role and responsibility for their use of K9′s. for the following mission critical area’s:

Bomb threats, Explosives, Pyrotechnics, arms and munitions and home made incinerating or explosive devices. Military and commercial explosives.

The K9 unit may at any time be called to search or identify any of the fore mentioned devices, should the need arise.

1. Bomb Threats

When a bomb threat is received by the Department or reported to a member of the Department, a dispatcher will record all available information, and inform the K9 Supervisor accordingly, he will require the original caller’s details and a link with him or her to follow up on the situation via conferencing could be required. The K9 supervisor who will make sure a further dog gets dispatched on a positive find and will alert the K9 unit commander of any positive find. The dispatcher will notify the control room supervisor as well as notifying the Fire Department to be on standby. And maintain radio silence, and clear that channel of any other traffic. The K9 unit will be called out in full strength, the cordon will be made and the area sealed off, follow-up searches will ensue for other or more devices. The rest of POLICE will begin and maintain a second cordon and a chronological incident log will be kept by the control room, all incidents will be moved to other channels, No cell phone communication may be made to any of the K9 officer’s numbers, until requested to by the individual involved.

No mention of bombs, explosives, explosive devices, or additional threats or descriptions of suspected vehicles or type of devices, will be made on the radio. Dispatching and exchanges of information concerning the threat will be done by telephone whenever possible to the JOC.

The K9 Supervisor has full responsibility for evaluating the threat level and determining the appropriate action to be taken, until such time that the device is defused or deemed secured no one will be allowed inside the cordon.

The Supervisor will notify and deploy all available Officers and be responsible for implementing Department procedures dealing with bombs and bomb threats.

The Supervisor, in consultation with appropriate qualified officials such as Bomb disposal unit, Fire chief, emergency and disaster manager, will decide whether to evacuate a building or not and their decision is final.. .

The decision to evacuate a building in which a major public event is taking place will be made by the South African Police service, the event organizers or her/his designee, in consultation with the Director of Emergency and disaster management Services or his/her designee.


When evaluating a bomb threat, the Supervisor will consider the following factors:

1) Time and day of week, pertaining to travelling and response time to get a K9 to the complaint.

2) The size of the Building, the population and usage, to determine the amount of dog that will be required.

3) The nature and wording of the threat, is it connected to a group or not.

4) Any recent incidents of civil unrest, or political incidents.

5) Reasons for Bomb threats at schools, businesses and educational Institutions – for reasons of possible disruption.

6) Any recent letters, telephone calls or other evidence of a real or imagined grudge against any campus office or any individual.

7) Any recent threats or bombings on other key points or in the area/region.


In tandem with any Bomb threat despatch, all relevant emergency personnel, such as the ambulance services and fire brigade needs to be placed on high alert. All searches for explosive devices or any hazardous explosive material shall be conducted by personnel trained to conduct such searches only, no member of the explosives detection team will be compelled to search a building if it is not inhabited or not deemed safe, for any reason. A robotic device will then be called in or MEDDS will be used.

The Supervisor and Dispatcher will compile all information obtained by patrol units and notify the JOC or Emergency Communications centre.

The Supervisor, if time permits, will consult with officials after evaluating all the available information and options. If the ranking official decides that the threat is reasonably valid, the area will be evacuated and cordoned off on their accord. In situations where the detonation time was not stated, the threat should be evaluated and a decision about whether to evacuate the area should be based on the best available information.

The Supervisor will assume field command and keep Dispatchers posted on developing conditions. The Call centre Supervisor will implement and hold radio silence, thorough the inspection of the building or area and a careful check of all people in that area; the thoroughness of the inspection will depend on the estimated detonation time, if known.

If no bomb or device is found, then direct a search for injured victims and do a final evacuation sweep, implement emergency notification procedure and, if necessary, will ask the Facilities to shut off utilities. If nothing is found the search will be discontinued, and the building and area cleared and sealed of all personnel for at least 20 minutes before the estimated or indicated explosion time. The area will be kept clear until at least 20 minutes past the estimated explosion time. If no explosion occurs within 20 minutes of the estimated explosion time and a complete search of the area was not been possible, a more thorough search may then be conducted. If no bomb is found, the area may be reoccupied. Officials on-site will notify the all-clear.


If a possible bomb or device or evidence is found, the Supervisor will evacuate the area, keep people at a safe distance, and will notify the, Bomb disposal unit contact person via a written or typed message that will not be transmitted in any electronic format within the area of 50 meters of the device, or in the event of a second device found, the fall out area. (That area affected by the first blast, where an device had detonated earlier and the immediate area around it). Will be 100 meters of the total evacuation area. The JOC, and Fire Department needs to be contacted first, the emergency and disaster management officers should make a threat analyses and transmit this information to the Fire chief or his seconding officer that arrives first at the scene, and the bomb disposal unit. If possible, all flammable objects, materials, and gas, fuel, and electrical pipes should be indicated or marked in the area. The bomb or device should not be touched or moved, nor should any item connected to it. Radio, Cell phone and electronic devices, vehicle traffic, and electrical power and water should be cut to, and diverted from this area if possible; bystanders should not be dispersed but moved to a containment area for questioning, and if necessary be arrested if they do not comply. Injured persons must be tagged and tracked with police escort to the hospital,( all people must be searched and patted down) an incident log must be kept, and the media correspondent should be asked to release joint media statements with all role players, all other communication needs to be kept at minimum and no references should be made to a bomb or explosive.

1.4 Bomb explodes, or explosion having taken place.

First procedure to follow is to close off all access routes, as far as possible from the point of blast, no police or POLICE vehicles may enter the cordon for whatever reason, or any rank. Only paramedic, fire fighting vehicles, doctor and ambulances. \, any and all other vehicles must be towed, or pushed out of the way by whatever means necessary.

Second objective is to start searching for secondary devices, if and when finished, to help clear the fall out area of obstacles, finding survivors and then falling back into an assistance role once the k9 function has been completed.

1.5 Chemical (Haz-chem/Hazmat) and other Implosions and Explosions.

If an explosion or implosion of an industrial nature occurs, the Supervisor will order the scene cordoned-off to protect evidence and to ensure the safety of onlookers. The Supervisor will anticipate the possibility of a second explosion, and chemical contamination, as well as the possibility of acts of sabotage and terrorism, he will push back and let rescue, fire fighters and other emergency personnel get and have free unobstructed access to the area. Whilst the k9 unit may also be utilised to search parked vehicles and building and containers in the immediate vicinity when suspecting or finding evidence of terrorism.

1.6 General cautions with explosives to be noted with concern

Building evacuation should take place rapidly and calmly. Dispatch will receive directions from the Supervisor to activate the JOC system for affected areas. Areas such as housing and outlying buildings will be notified by the quickest means available.

In searching for a bomb, search personnel should:

1) Use a flashlight. Light switches should not be activated; an explosive device could be activated by light switches.

2) Be aware of boxes and briefcases which appear to be unusually placed.

3) Be aware of traps such as trip wires and boxes or briefcases leaning against doors and walls.

4) Open doors with extreme caution and stand to one side when trying a door. Do not force a door if any resistance whatever is encountered. If a suspected explosive device is found, do not cover it; the act of covering it could detonate it, and anything put on it will have to be removed, which could also cause detonation.

5) Avoid the use of radios unless otherwise directed safe for use by a k9 Supervisor.

6) Call a bomb disposal unit on any positive do not wait for a second dog.

7) Safety of the Dog and handler can only be enforced by:

(a) Safety of the Dog Handler

1) Non-static clothing, footwear ,caution regarding “boobtraps”, use of


(b) Safety of the Dog and proofing a dog

Keep on leash in high traffic areas, be wary of not letting dog come in contact with or ingest explosives not letting dog touch parcels etc. ( During practice)

(c) Safe handling and transportation of explosives (during practice) by:

Using small quantities only

Rotating explosives every two months or sooner if deterioration is noted

Not holding blasting caps in hand

Storing explosives in approved safe only

Marking containers “EMPO”

Not putting hides near heat sources

Recording hides in note book and check off when they are removed and to where and by watching hides to prevent them from being stolen

(d) Types of explosives used that should be included in training

N.G. based explosives

T.N.T. based explosives




variety of det. cord and safety fuse

variety of Slurry

new products that come on the market, home made

(e) Proper familiarization

  • Airport terminal
  • Airport parking areas
  • Aircraft – all types
  • Cargo areas
  • Elevators
  • Escalators and travellators
  • Crowds of people
  • Ensuring the dog is “comfortable” in all areas


(f) The “SIT” and “DOWN” confirmation and reward

Dog indicating explosives by sit, or down

Dog pursuing to scent source

Quickly rewarding the dog and praise, positive reinforcement always using the same reward article

Allowing the dog to see with his “nose” only

3. Searching on line

2 meter leash

Using line for direction

Line being used for safety reasons

(h) Progression and conditioning of the dog

Start with N.G. based explosive

(i) Building searches

All buildings located on airport property (commercial/industrial) Searching high human density eras first then most likely areas. Remember to do it in a pattern or grid and have a search recorder present

(j) Outdoor searches

Dog may be off leash Exercising caution when article located by dog

(k) Vehicles searches

Searching exterior systematically not opening doors, hood or trunk on threat response,

(l) Aircraft searches

Searching most likely places first then resume pattern search of seats

(m) Baggage searching

Contaminated suitcases elimination should only be done by an x-ray machine and not by any k9, when the bomb disposal unit has no indication of explosives and we are purely searching for firearms or components, the method of placing suitcases (lay flat) after the x-ray machine will be followed to search

(n) Suspicious parcels

Not taking dog directly to parcel searching another area for a few minutes and then directing dog to parcel

(0) Degrees of Difficulty


  • Uninhabited premise
  • Little or no distractions
  • minimal human scent contamination of area explosive hide maximum of * metre above floor explosive hide placed in partially opened drawer explosive hide laying in the open outdoors explosive hide placed in an open container


Occupied premise

Explosive hide placed maximum 2 metres above floor human scent contamination of area; packaging – concealed but not air tight

  • distractions – people in the area
  • closed drawers
  • inside lockers
  • inside suitcases – nothing in suitcase but device


Working area – cargo shed – terminal building

Packaging – explosive device wrapped and packaged in air tight container contaminated suitcases containing device explosive hide high above floor -above 2 metres, explosive device very well concealed; hide explosive device inside suitcase and suitcase placed in closed locker

K9 Unit Force procedure manual


Collar (nylon) – not metal leash – 2 metres training aids;

  • flashlight
  • disposable gloves or tongs reward article

(q) Communication

Command the dog like you do in training” SEARCH” leash work, body movement, gestures, voice tones and variety of each should be noted it could make the dog nervous

(r) Reading the dog

Interpreting dog’s indication resting the dog when his interest wanes/fatigue observing the dog at all times interest vs. indication

(s) Distractions

People, vehicles, movement, food stuffs, animals or animal scent, noise fuel fumes, chemical fumes, garbage, Coffee, brake fluid.

(t) Common problems

Progressing too fast with degrees of difficulty

Improper pattern

Not genuine/enthusiastic induced by handler

Too much talking in the room, or to dog leading to false “SIT”

Dog’s lack of interest, due to shock or distractions and contamination

K9 Unit Force procedure manual Confidential Hostage Situations

In the event that hostages are taken, Officers are to:

1) Ensure the safety of uninvolved citizens.

2) Gain the safe release of all hostages. If the situation requires backup or special tactical teams, the Department will request personnel from the specialized units and other areas. Preferable the task force and the POLICE hostage negotiation teams – Exception: if conditions change so rapidly and we have a active shooter, someone shooting and slaughtering people at random, then there is no time to secure such assistance, the on-scene Supervisor shall have the authority and the responsibility to initiate a tactical solution. After an incident in which the on-scene Supervisor has initiated a tactical solution, that Supervisor will be required to immediate submit a written report to that effect.

3) Arrest the hostage taker(s) if such action can be accomplished without undue risk to the arresting Officers or to the public.


1.       Respond to the call out

Other possibilities such as biological and chemical agents could be disguised and made to look like pharmaceutical products. Anthrax, Aldicarb, Temic and pure Methaqualone are highly toxic.

Introduction, as most narcotic substance are made up of chemical compounds, it is very important not to touch or handle, and even taste any substance. These substance have poisonous elements in them. And contamination by skin absorption could be instant. Thus take precautions wear latex cloves.

If when, and where any drugs are found make sure that no one handles it.

1) A second fresh dog could be brought in to expand the search, or the container may be impounded, confiscated or broken open, which ever will be appropriate. There is no reason why a second dog must be brought in to confirm a nark indication. One dog indicating is sufficient, giving the handler justifiable cause and reasonable suspicion to proceed without a warrant.

2) The handler must try to identify the substance

3) The substance must be placed in a evidence bag, or file or container and be sealed and signed by the handler and the suspect, failing which, the find should be declared and pocket books should be signed by witnesses.

4) If it is a substantial find, or evidence is extracted, it should be relayed to narcotics and organised crime immediately.

5) Make sure to count, weigh and get police case numbers for every piece that will be submitted into evidence. Preferable done in the presence of the accused and the charge office commander.

6) The arresting officer will see to a complete docket being opened.

In the event that a positive find has been declared, the following   procedure should be followed. SOP on Crime scenes protection

Hostage Situations

In the event that hostages are taken, Officers are to:

1) Follow sop on approaching a crime scene plus arrive as stealthy as possible.

1) Set a cordon, and call backup.

2) Evacuate every building within shooting distance (if necessary).

3) Ensure the safety of uninvolved citizens and keep them away as far as possible as well as the media and TV.

4) Start negotiation if possible.

a) Follow sop on negotiation

5) The primary objective is the safe release of all hostages.

6) If the situation requires backup or special tactical teams they should be called in sooner rather than later

7)  The POLICE will request personnel from the specialized units and other areas to  help with the functions.

8) Preferable the task force and the POLICE hostage negotiation teams –

a) Exception:  if conditions change so rapidly and we have an active shooter, some one shooting and slaughtering people at random, then there is no time to secure such assistance.

b) The on-scene Supervisor shall have the authority and the responsibility to initiate a tactical solution.

3) Arrest the hostage taker(s) if such action can be accomplished without undue risk to the arresting Officers or to the public.



The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines with regards to parades.


Adherence to the practice of instilling discipline and simple form of supervision through the use of parades to address members.


Parade: Formal gathering of members for inspection.

Parade area: Area used for the parade.

Member: All MPO’s of the POLICE.


Reporting on duty

. All members shall report on duty at a predetermined location.

. Entry to be made in pocketbooks of work allocated to member by operational commander.

. Supervisors are responsible for inspecting all members.

. All pocketbooks to be signed by supervisor reflecting status of duty, i.e. On or off.

Inspection of members

. At a parade all members shall be inspected by the Supervisors so that the following can be noted:

1. Neatness

2. Cleanliness

3. Attire

4. Equipment

5. Use of any mind altering drugs or alcohol.

Reporting off duty

. All members shall report off duty on the parade area or as designated by the supervisor.

. Supervisors are responsible for inspecting each member.

. All pocketbooks to be signed off by Supervisors.


If an apprehension involves a dog bite the following procedure shall be followed:

In all instances of Dog bite summons the Integrity and Standards Unit

1        The injuries of the person shall be assessed, and medical  assistance summoned or the person shall be taken for assistance as soon as possible.

A) In all instances where a suspect receives a dog bite a POLICE J70 shall be completed and the injured person shall be taken to hospital. A J88 must be completed by a registered medical practitioner.

i.        If the suspect refuses to receive medical treatment this must be confirmed by a competent witness by noting and signature in your pocket book.

2        Should any person other than a suspect be bitten ensure that you record the full contact details plus extent of injuries of the person.

3        The supervisor shall be notified as soon as is reasonably possible.

4        A copy of the report documenting the bite shall be completed as soon as possible and forwarded to the K9 unit Commander for review.

5        The Unit commander shall immediately be forward copies of the   report to the following personnel:

a        The Director specialised services.

b        To the head of the Integrity and Standards unit

c        The Deputy Chief of Police

d        The Chief of Police

6        If injury to the dog, involved in the bite, is suspected the dog shall be taken, with the permission of the supervisor, to the nearest available veterinarian for an examination.

7        Any suspects that receive dog bites shall be arrested according to the SOP on arrest.

By order The K9 Unit Commander


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