D&D Tactical

A brief history of the “K9” and some the functions they serve

In the times when humans began domesticating dogs, their strength, trainability, and loyalty have made them suitable candidates for employment as guards and protectors. Earlier, their functions included hunting, defence, and refuse removal in the camps of travelling and migratory hunter-gatherer peoples. As humans began settling down, so did dogs, and the responsibilities they performed changed respectively. Dogs undertook new duties, going from home security to pest control to game hunting. Naturally, as societies developed specialised police departments to uphold peace and order, K9 units have advanced to meet their needs.

Brief history of police dogs

K9s, derived from “Canine” have become key figure in law enforcement and security. Police dogs have been developed as a result of the unique set of skills that they possessed as hunting dogs. It was no happenstance that in the pre-modern and early-modern periods, the earliest “police dogs” were Bloodhounds, utilised mainly for their tracking capabilities. From the 12th century right up to the early 20th century, before the founding of specialised law enforcement divisions, the historical records indicate that hound-type dogs were used by police forces in the British Isles and sporadically on the European continent.

As humans drifted from rural settlements into speedily growing urban areas during the 18th and 19th centuries, not only did contemporary, organised police departments become essential, but so too did contemporary police dogs. Major urban cities in England and France started using dogs for police work more frequently in the 1880s and 90s, with fluctuating degrees of success.

Over the decades that followed, police dogs grew into law enforcement officials in their own right in Belgium and Germany where they implemented the first structured and dedicated training courses. These police dogs, and the K9 units that spawned from their progressively valuable work, have been central parts of police departments ever since then, and have spread dramatically around the world.

What are the functions of police dogs?

Early police dogs served relatively basic functions: they would accompany foot patrol officers at nights, both to defend police and chase down or attack suspects in pursuit. Today, some police dogs may even take “oaths” and become sworn in as officers upon graduation from preparation academies, and others even have their own badges.

Similar to the way human police departments developed and law enforcement jobs began to incorporate all parts of what we now consider to be modern police work — investigation, pursuit, detection and forensics — police dogs progressively became specialised. Depending on the dimension and amount of resources of a particular department or sub-unit, police dogs can serve either a combination of roles or be specially taught to carry out a focused set of responsibilities.

The responsibilities of police dogs in modern K9 units encompass crowd control, search and rescue, the tracking and pursuit of suspects and missing individuals. Some police dogs are specially trained in detecting illegal substances that range from narcotics to poisons to explosives.

With the rise of crime in the Johannesburg South region of Gauteng, the rise of specialised security teams to supplement the efforts of police departments. D&D Tactical Security Services is a company that understands the daily strife and insecurity experienced by their clients. Crime and, subsequently, the concern of safety of businesses, staff and families seems to be a constant part of daily life D&D Tactical Security Services are therefore, dedicated to ensuring the security and peace of mind of the community. And for centuries dogs have been utilised to guard and protect. All K9s at D&D Tactical Security Services are trained to high levels of obedience and are thoroughly trained to follow both verbal commands and hand signals of their handlers.