Jim Bauerly, with the Woodbury County Sheriff’s Department in Sioux City, is president of Region 21 of the United States Police Canine Association.
“This is a narcotics certification, so some of the dogs are a single purpose dogs to detect narcotics. Some of them are dual purpose dogs that do the patrol work, as well as the narcotics,” Bauerly said. The annual re-certification not only ensures that the police dogs are prepared to serve, it also gives the handlers the chance for some friendly competition.
“We make it a competition, so the guys can have some fun with it. Everybody’s competitive, so it just adds a little extra fun,” Bauerly said. Bauerly served as one of the judges in the competition., says they look for several skills during the competition.
“We’re looking, first of all, if (the dog) can find the narcotics — how quickly they find it and how they indicate on it,” Bauerly said. Bauerly knows the importance of trained canines when it comes to police work. He’s worked with four dogs over the past three decades.
“It’s better than any human partner,” Bauerly said. “Your protection is in the back seat if you need it. They have good days just like people do and some days they work harder than others…but it’s a lot of fun.” Several of the canine units made a surprise visit to West Delaware High School in Manchester on Tuesday for a random drug search. Officials say nothing illegal was found.
(Thanks to Janelle Tucker, KMCH, Manchester)