Dog Handling Unit

Police dogs working with police dog handlers in one of the many police dog units in forces around the UK perform many essential tasks.

The Police Dog Unit is a support service that can be called upon to assist in missing person searches, searching for criminals or property, locating drugs or explosives, hostage situations and crowd control.

If you are interested in a career as a police dog handler, you might find the following ‘Quick Links’ useful;

  • If you are not yet in the Police Service: Police Recruitment – and check out the resources to help you with a successful application.
  • If you are a police officer considering a transfer, visit the Police Jobs Section.

Other functions that police dog units regularly perform include:

  • Crowd management at major sporting events
  • Searching buildings and open ground for missing and wanted people
  • Searching for evidence
  • Drugs detection and explosive detection
  • Tracking suspects
  • Victim recovery dogs
  • Tactical firearms operations
  • Supporting community-based initiatives
  • Public order response
  • High-profile, proactive, intelligence-led patrols

To apply for a post as a dog handler you must have completed your 2-year probationary period and must have proved yourself to be a competent police officer. You can then apply to the dog unit for a trial course with a police dog that is trained to accept commands from any handler. If you are deemed suitable you will have to wait until a vacancy arises, and at this time you can apply for the position. Other suitable candidates may also apply for the post, so the department has to decide who they feel is most suitable for the post. Previous dog handling experience is therefore an advantage for any officer applying to join the police dog unit.

Police dog handlers must have a genuine love for animals and be very patient. Your dog will live with you and will be part of your own family. When dogs retire normally at around 9 years old they will generally become your household pet.

How 2 Become – A Police Dog Handler

The 'How To Become A Police Dog Handler' CD Rom is a 140 page guide that will provide you with insider information on how to get one of the most sought after jobs within the Police Force! Full of insider tips and advice, and brought to you by a retired Police Dog Handler with 20 years experience, it will guide you through the selection process and help you to pass at the very first attempt!

£15.99

£13.99

How 2 Become – A UK Police Officer

Want to join the police force? The 'How to become a UK Police Officer' CD ROM is the most comprehensive product available to guide you through the UK Police Officer selection process and help you to secure this fantastic career at the first attempt.

£42.89

£11.45

You must be fit to be able to keep up with your dog during the rigorous training exercises they need to go through. Police dogs must learn to be highly obedient, so that they are always under strict control in the most dangerous of circumstances.

German Shepherd dogs are generally the most commonly used breed of dog within the UK Police, although other breeds such as Labradors (for sniffing), Dobermans, Rottweilers and Weimaraners are used too.

Police dogs are commonly specially bred within Police kennels, to ensure a constant supply of dogs. However, some are still bought in, or provided by the public if the dog is still young enough for training.

You may have arrived on this page from a search engine. The information contained above is relevant for the following search phrases; Police Dog, Police Dog Handler, Met Police Dogs, Police Dog Unit, How to become a Police Dog Handler.

In the News
Officers no longer under criminal investigation 14:30, 24th October GMT
Police watchdog finds "insufficient evidence" to establish if four officers committed an offence in the handling of a rape complaint.
Protection officer arrested over Palace locker ammunition 13:33, 24th October GMT
Metropolitan Police officer has been suspended and is being held in custody at a London police station following discovery.
Police couldn't have prevented railway bridge jump 13:00, 24th October GMT
Watchdog commissioner rules that there was not much officer could have done during the "immediate irrational act".
Met must pay £425,000 to undercover officer 'victim' 11:15, 24th October GMT
A woman who had a child with an undercover officer said she attempted suicide after finding out his true identity.
Largest serial killer op is investigation of the year 08:10, 24th October GMT
Detectives responsible for bring most serious female serial killer to justice given investigation award.
Chief announces retirement following 'successful' alliance 07:46, 24th October GMT
Warwickshire Police Chief Constable Andy Parker will leave after serving almost 32 years.
'Dedicated officer' passes away 07:48, 24th October GMT
Recipient of the chief constable's award for dedication to duty died off duty last Friday.
Police handling of Cliff Richard raid 'utterly inept' 07:54, 24th October GMT
South Yorkshire Police under fire for passing sensitive information to journalist.
Ex-police and crime commissioner 'could face criminal investigation' 07:56, 24th October GMT
Former South Yorkshire elected commissioner is "likely to face criminal investigation" over Rotherham report.
Lack of natural light causing officers 'emotional suffering' 07:44, 24th October GMT
Claims dark days in custody suites with no natural light can lead to "emotional suffering" as well as headaches and strained eyes.