I guess you've been to either SKIDDS (SWAT and K-9 Interacting During Deployments) and CATS (Canine Tactical School), or if you're very lucky, BOTH schools. I've been an instructor at both classes. I know very well what Brad teaches. The last class I instructed at was the last class he's doing in West Covina, in March of this year. I've instructed on the tactical side and do I a segment on the Ecollar. I've done so at about half a dozen of these classes.Tim Martens said:one of your fellow so-calites, brad smith, would disagree with you on the use of dogs in attics.
Being a police officer is a dangerous job. If people aren't prepared to faces those dangers, perhaps another occupation would be in order.Gregg Tawney said:The bottom line is....yes, it is a dangerous environment, however the other alternative is an officer climbing into a whole (or fatal funnel) and crawing around in an area that if a suspect wanted to kill or hurt him, would not be very difficult.
There's a difference between "not want(ing) to go" and realizing that sometimes "duty" will require it. It's against common sense to run towards the gun fire but that's what we do.Gregg Tawney said:We send the dogs into many dangerous environments. If the dog read his job descrition....it would say "you are going into dangerous environments that humans do not want to go!" That goes for crawl spaces under houses, and drainage pipes as well.
Perhaps after it happens the first time and you lose the dog to his injuries, you'll reconsider. Fortunately most of can learn, not only from our own experience, but from the experience of others. It's really unfortunate that in much of LE, progress is written in the blood of those who have made the mistake.Gregg Tawney said:It is very rare that a dog will fall through the ceiling.
Great comment Tim. Every deployment has to be examined individually. It's a bad plan to have no plan. It's also a bad plan to have an "automatic plan" one where individual circumstances aren't carefully examined. People always need to "think twice."Tim Martens said:that isn't to say i would never do it, but there are some things i would have to factor into my decision...
Isn't deciding "if the situation warrant(s) it" thinking twice?Gregg Tawney said:I would not think twice about inserting a dog into an attic if the situation warranted it.
Isn't deciding "if the situation warrant(s) it" thinking twice?[/quote]Gregg Tawney said:uot;] I would not think twice about inserting a dog into an attic if the situation warranted it.
Neither do I but facing risks is part of the job. "Everything" is not a K-9 problem. Dogs are good at some things and not so good at other things. In this part of the world, since attics are rarely entered, there will usually be physical signs that someone went up there. Most attic entries are in closets. Usually there will be fresh disturbances in the dust on the shelves under the opening. Usually there will be material from the attic on the floor. Few attics in this part of the world have "convenient" methods of getting into them. A ladder must be placed, boxes must be moved, clothing has to be shoved out of the way. All of these things are clues to an observant handler that someone has gone "to ground" up there. Throw in an alert from a dog that's had his nose placed at the entry point and/or the vents under the eaves of the roof and you know he's there.Gregg Tawney said:I dont believe in putting officers at risk unnecessarily.
Quite simply that sometime we're going to be placed in dangerous situations. Using a K-9 can sometimes mitigate that danger but not always and not completely.Gregg Tawney said:Yes, and your point.
Probably not. More than likely he'd be more focused on the dog closing in on him than on the handler making entry behind him. His attention certainly would have been divided and he'd probably try to shoot the dog that was about to bite him. You've made an absolute statement here and those are usually wrong. Few officers who are shot at are hit. Few officers who are shot die.Gregg Tawney said:And if he had a gun then there would be a dead officer.
I don't think he should have been sent the first time. The dog told the handler that someone was under the building. The dog's job, locating the suspect was done at that point. He could have been asked to surrender. He could have been gassed. He could have been waited out. He could have been taken into custody by a SWAT Team (which is how the problem was eventually settled).Gregg Tawney said:I would not have sent a dog the second time.
Easy Gregg, I'm agreeing with you here. LOL. When you "evaluate the situation" you're "thinking twice" about it.Gregg Tawney said:again, if the situation warranted it I would deploy the dog. Yes, I am going to evaluate the situation and decide if it is necessary to deploy my dog. The risk of injury to him against the benifit of the deployment. Pretty simple.
wow. maybe you've been out of the game too long lou. i can't believe you would think that way. "heck i'll go up there. even if he has a gun he'll probably miss and even if he doesn't, i'll still probably live." there are too many variables that you assume go our way. one is that the dog initially goes toward the suspect or in other words the dog is the first thing the bad guy sees. there is very little air current up in an attic and the dog has to get very close to the person before he'll alert (my experience). so if the dog goes in one direction and the handler up after him, there is a very good possiblity that the bad guy is on the other side and will see the officer before the dog (and get shot).Lou Castle said:Probably not. More than likely he'd be more focused on the dog closing in on him than on the handler making entry behind him. His attention certainly would have been divided and he'd probably try to shoot the dog that was about to bite him. You've made an absolute statement here and those are usually wrong. Few officers who are shot at are hit. Few officers who are shot die.
Of course this must be the reason for our difference of opinion. It couldn't be that my experience has been different from yours and it couldn't be that I have more experience than you with this; it must be that because I'm retired and therefore I've "lost touch." I've trained with over 130 different police departments and most of them agree with me.Tim Martens said:wow. maybe you've been out of the game too long lou.
I was refuting the absolute statement that Gregg made, "And if he had a gun then there would be a dead officer." It's not the case. I've arrested, as I'm quite sure that you folks have, many people who "had a gun," and I'm not dead, neither are you. It's silly and illogical to argue that "armed suspect = dead police officer."Tim Martens said:i can't believe you would think that way. "heck i'll go up there. even if he has a gun he'll probably miss and even if he doesn't, i'll still probably live."
That hasn't been my experience, that of LAPD or that of LASD. By the time an attic is searched the suspect's scent has reached every corner and it's pouring out the vents under the eaves of the roof. Many roofs have turbine ventilators that exhaust air from the attic. This is another place that a dog can get scent. In most cases you need a ladder to get into the attic, why not sniff the vents and the turbines first?Tim Martens said:there is very little air current up in an attic and the dog has to get very close to the person before he'll alert (my experience).
This is very similar to the situation when an officer who is doing yard to yard searches makes entry into the back yard of the house. Officers do that quite regularly. In both situations (the attic and the yard) the suspect knows where the officer is and the officer is in the "fatal funnel." Do you wait in the front yard while your dog searches the back yard? Or do you at least watch him to make sure that covers all of the yard? Do you ever enter a back yard?Tim Martens said:so if the dog goes in one direction and the handler up after him, there is a very good possiblity that the bad guy is on the other side and will see the officer before the dog (and get shot).
Not cavalier at all. But to allude to "armed suspect = dead officer" is not true.Tim Martens said:when i made mention of you being out of the game too long . . . what i was refering to was your seemingly cavalier attitude about confronting suspects armed with firearms and officers being shot or shot at.
Yes you were a handler for a longer period of time than I was. How long have you been a trainer? A handler is able to get his own dog to work. A good one may be able to solve simple problems of other K-9's. A trainer has to be able to train any dog that is presented to him, no matter what the problem and no matter what the dog's history. It's common for handlers to think they know it all after a few years. I'm sure I wasn't the only one. Fortunately I had a mentor who kept pointing out that I didn't.Tim Martens said:and since you took a shot at my "experience" let me just say that i have handled a PSD longer than you did.
I think that is exactly the issue. At some point you enter. I don't know where you work but in some parts of this area it's unwise for a dog to enter some backyards. They're full of trash, junk cars and the like. There's no room for a dog to move around in. Dogs no longer have the advantage of speed and agility. Officers have to search those areas "by hand." I think that an attic presents so many dangers to a dog that they're in the same category. This is another area where LAPD and LASD agree with me.Tim Martens said:you asked about yard to yard searches. i send the dog in through the side yard. once he clears that, i move up to the corner of the house. i peek around the corner occasionally to see where it was that he might have missed, but yes, at some point you enter the yard. that's not the issue.
This is my point, at some time during the attic insertion the handler (or someone) has to go up there. At least the handler needs to see where the dog has searched and make sure that he covers every corner.Tim Martens said:to answer your question....if i sent my dog into an attic to bite someone and he doesn't release the bite? then obviously you've got to go in and out the dog using the best tactical approach that you can.
One of the problems that many people have is that they don't train for the worst of circumstances, they train for the average or most common of situations. What you describe here, where the suspect is "distracted" by being bitten doesn't always happen. Sometimes suspects aren't the slightest bit distracted. Relying on this can lead a handler/backup team into trouble.Tim Martens said:you spoke of a suspect being distracted at the sight of a dog. i think he might be a bit more distracted if he were wearing the dog....
Greg many K-9 certs are just that, a cert of the K-9 not the team. Tactical movement is very difficult to grade. There are many right ways to do something, some better than others, much of it subject to opinion and attention to one detail over another. There are also many wrong ways to do something. Those are the ones that can get the team injured.Greg Long said:I watched several officers certify that day from different depts and all of them did it the same way.There was no tactical advancing where the handler only moved into a cleared area.They just stopped at the door and gave warning and then sent the dog in and waited.Just wondering your thoughts on this.