Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

NZ Defence Force's First Explosive Detection Dogs Graduate

Dog handler
Corporal Mark Barker and Cougar.
Dog handler Corporal Mark Barker and Cougar.

Media Release

7 November 2012

NZ Defence Force's First Explosive Detection Dogs Graduate

A new developing NZ Defence Force capability will see explosive detection dog teams broaden existing force protection measures, providing support to overseas operations, exercises and taskings in New Zealand.

Four NZ Defence Force dog handlers and five dogs graduated today from the Defence Force’s first explosive detection dog course. The 12 week long course was run with the assistance from the New Zealand Police Dog Training Centre.

The explosive detection dogs have been trained to detect and indicate the presence of a number of explosive odours, including commercial, military and home made explosive mixes.

Dog handler Sapper
Liam Harris with Xia, detecting hidden explosives as part of
training.

Dog handler Sapper Liam Harris with Xia, detecting hidden explosives as part of training.

Some of the graduating team are expected to deploy shortly to support operations in Afghanistan, and some of the team will be supporting Exercise Kiwi Koru, currently taking place in New Zealand.

In Afghanistan, the dog teams will carry out search and detect tasks and support patrols, assist with vehicle and compound searches and monitor camp access points.

The NZ Defence Force identified an operational requirement for the development of explosive detection military dogs to support our personnel on operations and exercises, says Commander Joint Forces New Zealand, Major General Dave Gawn.

“As the Improvised Explosive Device (IED) threat has evolved, so has our need to provide broader search and detect capabilities to ensure optimum force protection for personnel.

“Our explosive detection dog teams will be one of many search and detect measures that provides force protection to our personnel.

“Explosive detection military working dogs are proven to save lives and are widely used by our NATO partners. They are an invaluable asset, and search and detect capability. No man-made technology can effectively replicate a dog’s sense of smell which is said to be a thousand times more sensitive than humans.”

Defence Force dog
handlers with their dogs, graduate from NZ Defence Force's
first explosive detection dog course.

Defence Force dog handlers with their dogs, graduate from NZ Defence Force's first explosive detection dog course.

Both dogs and handlers underwent a robust selection process. While 12 dogs started the course, only the best five canines are graduating – two German Shepherds, a Cocker Spaniel, a Labrador and a Collie Cross. Two of the dogs were sourced from the NZ Police Dog Training breeding programme, with the others sourced from the Australian Customs breeding programme, NZ Aviation security and NZ Police.

Each handler will be paired with a dog, leaving one dog as a reserve. The dog handlers have been trained to handle their dogs to ensure they conduct searches in a safe manner, and understand the pre-cursers and indications when their dog detects an explosive substance. The handlers have also been trained to maintain the health and welfare of their animal, from feeding, grooming, and exercise, to kennel area maintenance and basic veterinary skills.

The NZ Police Dog Training Centre supported the NZ Defence Force with the course development, and provided instructional support, facilities and resources throughout the course.

The NZ Defence Force has also been liaising with Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) to ensure the appropriate animal welfare requirements are met.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Max Rashbrooke: On How To Make Government
More Open

It’s true that New Zealand scores well on many international rankings of openness... Those findings are all important, and welcome. But we cannot ignore the fact that there are still serious problems.

For a start, those international surveys, while often complimentary, have also pinpointed major weaknesses: political donations are badly regulated, for instance, and appointments to government boards frequently go to those with strong political connections. More>>

 
 

In Court: Hamilton Student's Lawsuit Over Climate Change Policy

A law student from Hamilton is preparing to challenge the Government in the High Court on Monday over what she says is a “failure” to properly address climate change. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Fallout From The Barclay Tape

This is hardly a case of cleaning out your desk and being turfed out onto the pavement. As others have pointed out, the disgraced Clutha-Southland MP will remain on the public payroll for three months until the election, and for three months afterwards. More>>

ALSO:

Visions: National Party Conference

National Party leader Bill English today outlined his vision to take New Zealand into the 2020s and his key priorities for the next Parliamentary term – including further raising incomes and reducing taxes. More>>

ALSO:

Ombudsman: Canterbury Schools Reorganisation Mishandled

An investigation into the Canterbury schools reorganisation after the February 2011 earthquakes has found significant gaps and flaws in the Ministry’s engagement and communications with schools and communities. More>>

ALSO:

Law Commission: Contempt Report "Protects Right To Fair Trial"

The proposed Act limits what news media representatives and bloggers can report on court proceedings, but it also makes clearer than the current law where the line is between contempt and freedom of expression. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election
 
 
 
  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog