K-9's Seminar Training Independence - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

K-9's Seminar Training Independence

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K9's at the Bay County Sheriff's Office are sniffing their way towards independence.

The four day seminar is host to agencies from all over the state. Training includes dogs tracking down the odor of different types of drugs, and alerting, but doing so on their own.

"We want dogs that will independently work on their own and don't have to have their handler with them," said Lieutenant Kevin Francis.

But the training isn't for nothing. Efforts by instructors to lead dogs to work solo will help later on in dealing with investigations.

"The further we can get the handler away from the dog the better it's going to be for us when we go to court and testify," said K-9 handler Jeff Duggins.

Argos and his handler have years of experience and a pedigree for the job.

"Well, Argos, he's doing pretty good," said Duggins. "He's doing about fair to midland as far as the rest of the dogs. He's been doing this a lot longer than the other dogs. Also, he's 13 years old and most of the dogs out here are only four or five years old. So, he's a little more seasoned."

Dogs from as far as Hernando County have traveled for the free seminar.

"It's really a great seminar for these guys to go to," said Francis. "It's four days long, they get great instruction from trainers who do this throughout the United States, and they really get a lot of training. Once again, it doesn't cost anything for these agencies to send these guys here."

"And that's just more experience that you can compile into what you're doing on the road, or in the street, or in your training activities," said Duggins.

Training will continue Wednesday at Tyndall Air Force Base for day two of the four day course.