Operations>Bakersfield Police Department K-9 Unit
About The K-9 Unit
The Bakersfield Police Department K-9 Unit was established in 1988 with the first teams being placed into service in January 1989. The original team consisted of four German shepherd police dogs which were imported from Europe. The unit has since expanded in size to its current compliment of ten cross-trained patrol dogs and two Labrador retrievers which are trained in narcotics detection.
Since 1989 the unit has been responsible for thousands of arrests, from burglary to homicide suspects.
K-9 Unit Demonstrations
The Bakersfield Police Department K-9 Unit frequently provides demonstrations to the public. These demonstrations showcase many of the units' capabilities. These demonstrations, which are usually done for schools and benevolent organizations, can be scheduled by calling
K-9 & Narcotics Detection
The Bakersfield Police Department police service dogs have been trained and are certified to detect the presence of marijuana, methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine.
ability of the police K-9s to locate concealed narcotics
contraband rests with two major qualities which are
inherent in the police service dog. The first is the
dog's amazing olfactory (sense of smell) capability.
When this remarkable sense is coupled with the dog's
strong play and hunting drives, the dogs are taught to associate
the scent of specific narcotics with their "reward" or "toy." To
earn this reward, the dogs are trained to search boxes,
rooms, yards, automobiles, and any other locations
where there is a likelihood someone may have concealed
narcotics contraband. An effort is made to prevent
the dog from coming into direct contact with any of
these drugs as these drugs are as poisonous to dogs
as they are to humans. Suspects sometimes use distraction
scents to mask the odor of narcotics contraband in
an attempt to foil the detection capabilities of the
animals. However, for the most part, these efforts
have failed as documented by the hundreds and hundreds
of pounds of seized narcotics contraband which were
destined for street-level sales.
A General History of K-9 And Law Enforcement
Law enforcement agencies throughout the world have long recognized the value of properly trained police service dogs. These animals, when appropriately utilized, have time and time again proved themselves instrumental in achieving the objectives and missions of the law enforcement agency.
The police K-9, due to its strength, agility, courage, and amazing olfactory capabilities can be utilized to assist law enforcement in various tasks in a more thorough and efficient manner.
Because of these attributes, police service dogs can be utilized to assist in searching for potentially violent criminals, aid in the apprehension of fleeing criminals who may place innocent community members or other police officers at risk of injury. The dogs also offer the department an effective public relations tool to disseminate information about the police department's mission/functions/crime fighting efforts. In potentially dangerous situations, the police K-9 can often assume the risk by preventing exposure of a police officer to a violent confrontation. And finally, since all the K-9s are trained to detect narcotics contraband, they have located literally hundreds and hundreds of pounds of marijuana, methamphetamine, cocaine, and heroin.
The K-9 Unit encourages responsible pet ownership by advocating the following:
-Licensing, vaccinating, and spay/neutering your pets. For more information visit the animal care center and animal control website.