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
HMIC: Police committed to tackling corruption 00:10, 30th January GMT
Report found that strides have been made in 122 out of 125 areas which needed improvement in terms of integrity.
Risks to officers named in lost discs 'assessed' 16:18, 29th January GMT
Steps have been taken to ensure that police named in lost documents are not at risk of attack, government says.
Police rape investigators given new guidance on consent 12:34, 29th January GMT
Alleged perpetrators should be challenged to state what steps they took to be sure consent had been fully and freely given.
Custody volunteers recognised for long service 15:36, 29th January GMT
Independent volunteers check on the welfare of people in police custody.
Officer, do you have time to read this? 08:40, 29th January GMT
Royston Martis gives his view on the latest analysis of police demand, because recorded crime IS down after all...
Complex nature of human trafficking shown in documentary 17:30, 28th January GMT
Bedfordshire Police hope that the latest episode of 24 Hours in Custody showed the public how to spot the signs of enforced labour.
Learning series: How to investigate an aggravated burglary - Part 3 09:01, 29th January GMT
In the third of a five part learning series, Paul Cooper examines identifying suspects, search warrants and arrest strategy, home arrest searches, continuity of evidence, PACE detention and warrants of further detention.
Home Office earmarks £10 million for policing research 06:00, 29th January GMT
Theresa May says funds will go towards trying to understand why people commit crimes and why crime is falling.
'I've witnessed the worst and best of humanity' 07:00, 29th January GMT
Tomorrow (January 30) Terry Spence QPM will retire from policing after 40 years, stepping down as chairman of the Police Federation for Northern Ireland. Here he reflects on his service, much of which was during a turbulent time.
Seven new forces want direct entry superintendents 06:00, 29th January GMT
On the day that those already hired as part of controversial scheme go out on patrol for the first time, several new forces will be open for applications.