The International Police K9 Conference is a multi-faceted training experience designed to educate law enforcement officers in the unique field of K9 law enforcement. There are various levels of officers who attend each conference, from individual K9 officers to supervisory personnel. The Conference has gained worldwide recognition and has been attended by officers from countries around the world including Sweden, Finland, China, Mexico, England, the Philippines and Canada, just to mention a few.
As such we desire to maintain the highest possible standard in how the program is presented. The most integral part of that presentation is the host agency. Under normal circumstances, with good host support, it takes roughly six months for each program to be organized. In most cases, in order for us to ensure available instructors, we prefer eight months to a year advance notice of a confirmation by a host agency of their desire to host a conference in their area. This allows Eden Consulting Group enough lead time to ensure the best possible result.
K9 Commander / Administrator Program – Designed to educate supervisory staff on K9 management, including, but not exclusively limited to policy, liability concerns, hiring practices, choosing training schools, the need for training time, certification standards, employee relationships, supporting the K9 unit, how to choose handlers and education on the capabilities and deployment of K9 teams.
Tactical Patrol Dog Program – The patrol dog program challenges handlers at any level of expertise. The unique talents of the individual instructors at the conferences allow each student to work at their level. Patrol dog classes are very intense and may include muzzle techniques, high risk vehicle clearing, helicopter deployment, building search techniques, live firearms training, tactical obedience routines, problem solving techniques, deployment in chemical munitions and much more. As well as the these practical training experiences, there is extensive classroom training that varies at each conference, but may include such subjects as K9 officer safety, liability updates, testifying in court, K9 behavior and modification as well as scent training lectures.
Narcotics Dog Program – This program has recently been entirely re-worked to include more street specific problems. Officers work their dogs on practical problems such as UPS parcel locations, aircraft, buses, warehousing and various modes of ground transport. Simulated experiences such as searching a recently raided house still with the remnants of smoke, flash bang odor and tear gas. The course changes slightly with each program dependent upon what the host agency can provide for training locations and the amount of narcotics that can be provided for the various training scenarios.
Basic & Advanced Trauma Care – This is an optional program dependent upon the host agency. Very well received wherever it has been included in the program, this school has been directly responsible for the saving of a number of canine lives after their handlers completed the program. This is the original K9 trauma program developed by Dr. John Anderson from Simi Valley, California and we are pleased to be able to continue to offer it at our courses. This program is offered to host agencies hosting any conference as an option.
Advanced Tactical/SWAT K9 - The advanced canine tactics school is designed to serve those canine teams who have previously completed the patrol portion of the international police k9 conference, or those experienced teams who are looking to further challenge the limits of their canine training experience. The focus of the school is to address both the tactics of officer safety for the canine team, as well as preparing canine teams to work well with their own agencies tactical (SWAT/ERT) units. The goal of the advanced canine tactics and swat school is designed to be a challenging and realistic canine training experience that will change the way officers think about canine training and identify more opportunities for the safe and effective deployment of police service dogs in high risk situation.
Problem Solving/Muzzle Techniques - By far our most popular class this program provides unique, practical solutions to enhancing your ability to control your dog during intense situations. The most valued component is working on managing the bite work on your dog. This class teaches you how to work with your dog, using his innate instincts and abilities to learn to change your dogs behavior. This program teaches steps to help you overcome handler aggression issues, equipment fixation problems and helps to give you a more fundamental understanding of how to work with your dog instead of against your dog to accomplish the ultimate in distance control without resorting to the more common tools of the trade. We teach you techniques that allow the dog to teach himself. When the dog learns the desired behaviors and that he can succeed only when exhibiting appropriate behaviors, you have clean outs, no handler aggression issues, and a dog that is more tactically sound and in control. This program requires only a fenced in training field for facilities.
Urban Tracking School - Our basic and advance tracking schools have been developed to assist officers in learning the most powerful techniques available for locating suspects who have fled from crime scenes. In many regions of North America this art has been lost over the years due to the advent of shorter training schools. Under normal circumstances it requires a 12 to 14 week program in order to include the tracking profiles in a dog in order for him to be capable of street ready tracking. Consistent ongoing training is also required to maintain this valuable profile. Our tracking specific program concentrates specifically on the tracking profile during the time the team is in attendance. It must be understood that the end result will depend largely on the amount of experience the team has in tracking prior to coming into the program, and the amount of time the student can attend the program.
Tracking Program Expectations - If the team has no previous tracking experience at all and the dog has the appropriate ability, the team will meet the level one and has the potential to meet our level two specifications for tracking at the end of a four week program. If the team has prior experience and is at a superior level one specification prior to attending the program, the team can expect to reach a level two and target for level three specifications at the end of the four week school. For those who are already meeting these specifications, the teams will be challenged to include advanced urban hard surface tracking techniques.
Other programs include Aggression and Control Seminars, Decoy Schools, Legal and Liability Programs as well as advanced K9 Trauma Care. These programs can all be provided as a hosted conference, or for individual agencies and associations. Call for pricing and details.
Your Decision To Host
The International Police K9 Conference is a five day intensive program. The hours are long, running from 8 AM to Midnight four out of the five days. Officers are usually up at 6:30 in order to have breakfast in time, and are normally not in bed until shortly after midnight. On the final day, the start time is the same, with the program usually completing by 2:00 PM when certificates are issued.
In order for the Conference to be successful, the host agency must be capable of providing training locations within short travel times when at all possible, and be willing to provide host “team leaders” for the duration of the conference. Eden Consulting provides 1 complimentary position for every 10 K9 Teams that register. Normall there are a minimum of forty officers in attendance. The host agency offices are assigned to the patrol dog program as the patrol program is divided up into four teams, each requiring a team leader.
It is important to understand that good hosting of the Conference is imperative to the success of the programs. The programs provided are limited only by the training opportunities provided by the host agency.
Of vital importance, the host agency must provide enough decoys to accommodate the needs of all the training profiles each evening. This normally requires 12 decoys who are capable of “catching” dogs on a bite sleeve when necessary. These decoys are invited to attend the entire school, free of charge, and are normally given extensive training on decoy work during the week and can be an excellent opportunity for prospective handlers who are looking to improve their potential as future K9 officers.
Should you decide to host a Conference, this guide will assist you in what steps to take in order to properly prepare. If you have any questions please feel free to contact Bob Eden directly by Email at or by calling 403-569-6822.
The first step in hosting the International Police K9 Conference is to determine if you have the venues required to make the operation a success. Venues include both the training sites as well as classroom space enough to accommodate all the participants.
Classrooms – Classes are run daily for the entire five day program, from 9 AM until 4:30 PM. The size of the class needs to be large enough to accommodate the number of students applying for the program. Classes can extend anywhere from 40 to 100 participants at any given conference, so it is wise to ensure maximum capability. Depending on the program structure you may need a second, smaller classroom to accommodate a separate class. For example, a patrol class may run concurrent with a narcotics class, therefore two classrooms would be required, although the second classroom can usually be significantly smaller in size, accommodating 25 or less in most cases.
Classroom Setting – Each classroom setting needs to be in a “classroom” style setting. In other words, tables where the students can take notes with the focus of the class to the front of the room.
Multi-media - In most cases our team will have computers with them, however a projector or other system is often required as is a video machine. A good stereo system that has the ability to play cassettes and provide better sound from a video system also enhances the quality of instruction if it can be made available. If a second classroom is required for your program (ie: narcotics or explosives program) you will also need a duplicate system in the second room. The projection system provided by Eden & Ney Associates will be used in the main classroom facility.
Accommodations - The International Police K9 Conference is an expensive program to operate, and as a result, it is an expensive program for officers to attend. Many officers attend supporting themselves financially, often without any support from their respective agencies.
To assist us in keeping costs down so we do not have to raise the costs of the programs, and to make the out of pocket expenses to officers attending the programs more palatable, the lodging expenses need to be minimized as much as possible, however at the same time we do our best to locate hotels within your area that are reputable and in good areas preferably close to the training locations. To that end, we hire a specialist company that does initial research and negotiates for hotel rates who will locate potential candidate properties. Once those properties are found, they are offered an opportunity to bid for the opportunity to be the host hotel.
To that end, we will need your assistance to help narrow down he best quality hotels. This may entail a visit to some of the hotels to assist us in determining the most suitable location and help us to make a final decision on the best hotel to host the conference.
Once the host hotel/motel has been determined, and a confirmation received from the host agency that they are a confirmed go, the Conference will be announced, brochures developed and mailed out.
Announcements by department communications advising agencies to contact Eden Consulting Group for further details or registration packages can also begin at this time. It is recommended that multiple teletypes be sent out during the time that registrations are being accepted.
Patrol Dog Program Minimum Requirements
Venues - The basic conference is designed slightly different for each program. However, the most intensive preparation is always for the patrol dog program. The patrol dog program runs 4 teams with a maximum of 10 officers in each team. Each team rotates through a set schedule each day until they complete the program. For this program the following are required:
1. Open grass field, roughly the size of a football field, fenced if possible, or away from the general public where the dogs can be worked freely during muzzle training. Shady areas nearby where breaks can be taken and vehicles parked are preferred.
2. Firearms Range – Required for the four evening classes from 19:00 hours to 23:30 hours. Vehicle access to the range is preferred so officers can do K9 deployments out of their cars during the training.
3. In the morning, along with the large field, two smaller areas are required for two very distinct classes. A grassy area large enough to work 2 to 3 dogs at a time for problem solving, as well as an area for tactical obedience. An area half the size of a baseball field for each of these is ideal. If a K9 obstacle course is close by and available, it can be used for tactical obedience routines.
4. An industrial park or similar area where high risk vehicle stops can be performed without public interference. An academy driving course, or out of the way industrial park is fine.
5. Two felony vehicles for training high risk vehicle stops. These must be vehicles where damage can be sustained. (IE: The dogs may scratch the car, or the interior may be marred from the dog fighting a decoy in a bite suit in the car.) The cars must be large enough to fit a good size man wearing a bite suit and helmet into. (A six foot decoy in a full bite suit has some difficulty working out of a Honda Civic…)
6. Three bite suits, and eight bite sleeves if possible. Some equipment will be provided, but this is a backup that is usually needed at each program.
7. Simunition / Blank weapons and supplies. Eden & Ney Associates Inc. will pick up the cost on the Simunition and blanks if used at a program, however to ease the transport of weapons, it is requested that you provide at least 2 Simunition capable weapons. Standard .38 revolvers are fine.
8. Chemical Munitions – A building where tear gas canisters can be deployed for one afternoon or morning class. We also require canisters of CN, CS or OC, with OC being the munitions of choice. If you have enough advance notice the best source we have found is with your local SWAT/ERT team. Ask them to put aside any materials they have that are due out for rotation, or that can be used for training. Twelve to fourteen canisters are usually required to complete the program for all the dog teams. Six to eight smoke canisters, or if at all possible a theatre smoke machine from your local fire department is also required.
Optional Helicopter Program - Patrol
Helicopter Deployments – This is an optional program, but one that seems to be requested more and more by our host agencies. If the host agency desires, they may provide aircraft and crew for helicopter deployments. The air crews benefit from the experience of doing multiple deployments of dog teams and training to provide air support for ground K9 operations and this aspect of the conference often becomes the highlight of the program.
In order to provide helicopter deployment scenarios two landing zones fairly close together, (within one mile) where a ground scenario can be set up from each LZ is preferred. The routine is normally to load a dog team, fly them to the LZ and deploy them on a search for an armed suspect. While deployed, the air crew provide aerial support so the teams learn how to work safely with air support. At the completion of the scenario, the team is picked up and returned to its starting point, where a new dog team is then picked up and put through the same process. Upon returning to the original location, the dog team has a second scenario waiting for them that does not include air support but is tactically oriented.