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Police dogs in action at K-9 regional trials
All week you can see some K-9's at their finest at the Escambia County Sheriff's Office 2014 Regional K-9 Trials. K-9 's will compete in an array of events including obedience, agility and criminal apprehension.
These dogs are so amazing. One of the things they did today was something called hot box where they had to find which box a person was hiding in. They did it fast and with precise skill. Even though their noses are much stronger than ours, it's still not exactly easy for them. The person had been in every box, so their scent was already all over the field so the dogs had to focus and point out exactly where they were.
"Their nose work, they have the ability to smell 50 to 100 times greater than a human being."
For Lt. Jason Potts, this trial is more than just about getting certified. It's likely the last one his dog, Ascon will be healthy enough to do. The relationship between a handler and a dog is a special one.
"It's a bond hard to describe because you spend more time with him than your family. The dog goes home with you, to work with you, so many hours of hard training with them."
Forty-nine different handlers from all the state have similiar relationships with their K-9's so while they are out here to learn, they are also here to show their dogs off.
"It exposes the dog other than just working, helps you be a stronger handler."
"When we spend time together, with agencies across different agencies, talk about health, training methods, etc."
Through out the week, they will be doing different types of training to test many skills. So what exactly are the judges looking for?
"How the dog finishes, extra commands the handler may use, just separates the polished work."
They will be doing a public demonstration on Thursday at 7 p.m. at Woodham Middle School. There will be games prizes but best of all, you can to see these guys with your own eyes.