K9 Services

Tripwire’s K9 Division offers a variety of K9 classes at our training center.  We train in accordance to national standards and can offer NAPWADA, IPWADA, USPCA, USFWDS and CA POST certifications.  Our curriculum is science based and developed on the best practices from partnerships with Duke University and our experience as military and police K9 instructors from various programs across the United States, including Naval Special Warfare (NSW), MARSOC and other SOCOM MPC programs. Our training is based on sound principles and create a solid, reliable foundation that will hold up under the scrutiny of law.  Bring your dog from anywhere in the world and we’ll get you squared away.

Our K9 Program Manager is Mr. Cameron Ford.

Click to learn more about Cameron.

Our main training facility, located in Gettysburg, PA, has multiple training areas to meet your needs and requirements, including: shooting and explosive demolition ranges, vehicle search areas, multiple and varied buildings, cargo/parcel screening platforms, as well as our 200-acre full-mission profile environment. Additionally, we have on-site housing for 16 personnel, a 30-person classroom and a five (5) run climate-controlled indoor/outdoor kennel building to house students K9 partners during their training stay.

Click the photo to see more of our facility. 

K9 Training Courses

Patrol and Detection Handler Courses (Explosives, Narcotics, Firearms, Human Remains and Electronics/Cell Phone)

  • 2-week course for previously trained dogs (detection or patrol): $1,500.00/team*
  • 4-week complete course for detection (no explosives) or patrol: $3,000.00/team*
  • 6-week complete imprinting/training course for explosive detection teams: $5,000.00/team*
  • 12-week complete dual-purpose course (Patrol/Tracking and Detection): $7,500.00/team*

Train-the-Trainer (TTT) Courses

Our TTT courses meet and exceed industry standards.  Our curriculum is built upon stringent federal training standards and students will receive a certificate from USFWDS (United States Federal Working Dog Standards) at the completion of training.

  • 2-week Basic Trainer (Patrol OR Detection) $1,500.00*
  • 4-week Advanced Trainer (Patrol AND Detection) $2,800.00*

“Detection: On-the-Mark” ($275.00/team)

During this 3-day seminar students will discuss the common problems that handlers deal with involving detection dogs. Cameron will describe how a seemingly small and simple change in your approach, based on science and psychology, will lessen or eliminate the issue(s). Students will also learn improved techniques for odor imprinting and final response to odor, which will create a much safer method for detection (primarily explosives) and a reliable K9 program in the event of scrutiny under of law.  This class is for ALL types of detection dogs, including SAR and HRD.

“K9 Integration with Tactical Operations” ($350.00/K9 and $250.00/Tactical Officers)

This 4-day training evolution provides students with an overview of and an open forum for the use of a K9 team within a tactical scenario. Our staff of former Special Operations members will cover CQC techniques, our Bomb Squad/EOD staff members will cover all aspects relating to explosive breaching operations and other explosive related practices, Cameron, who is a former Naval Special Warfare (SEAL) MPC instructor and SWAT K9 handler, will discuss situations and options for the use of K9 in high-risk operational deployments. This class is meant for open and interactive conversation and to share real-world lessons learned. Understanding the needs of agencies and policies can vary from department to department and this type of course is designed to create dialogue and tools for your agencies K9 program. Our practical scenarios are designed to fully integrate K9 handlers with SWAT and/or Bomb Squad members, so that all parties learn the best way to employ K9 into a myriad of situations. The scenarios we provide will require critical thinking and problem solving for the K9 and team members.  When you come to our facility in Gettysburg, PA we provide live-fire ranges, less-lethal munitions, conventional/military/improvised explosive materials, bomb suits and robots, drones and much more!  Days 1 and 2 are comprised primarily of classroom theory and discussion, while days 3 and 4 consist of full practical scenarios designed to test and learn operational limits. 

“The Science of E” ($250.00/person)

This 2-day course teaches science-based communication principles that can be used in conjunction with your remote collar, which enhances your training and communication with your K9. We will cover the importance of timing, how to use the operant conditioning approach and the use of tones and vibration for effective communication. Techniques for solving common problems will be presented and e-collar myths will be debunked.

Large Explosive Hide (Mass Quantity) Seminar ($200.00/person)

This 1-day course presents explosive detection K9 teams with scenarios involving quantities of explosive materials that are realistic and often used in real-world threats, but are rarely trained upon. Unusual K9 behavior involving mass quantities of explosive material is often misunderstood and/or misinterpreted by the handler, due to unfamiliarity. Students will imprint their dog on various types of mass explosives in a calm and controlled environment prior to participating in authentic scenario based practical exercises. Our highly experienced staff of cadre will introduce teams to amounts of explosives that increase in quantities throughout the course and range from tens to hundreds, and even thousands of pounds. Additionally, any issues encountered during imprinting or scenario events will be identified and every attempt to mitigate them will be made during course duration. Material weights encountered during this course will range from 5 to 5,000 pounds. 

Homemade Explosives (HME) for K9 Handlers ($350.00/person)

The most common weapon being utilized by criminals and terrorists throughout the world is improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that contain improvised (homemade) explosives. As a first responder, you are increasingly more likely to encounter this type of hazard while responding to a critical incident. This course will provide you with the basic information required to keep you and your team safe. During the first phase of this course, students will learn to identify basic improvised explosives, identify chemical precursors and equipment used in the illicit manufacture of improvised explosives, the hazards associated with each precursor, safe-handling techniques, and general safety precautions. Throughout the second phase of this course, students will be safely exposed to live improvised explosive formulations, including several peroxide based mixtures such as TATP & HMTD, which were used in the recent attacks in Europe. Students will witness first-hand, the sensitivity and destructive power of improvised explosives, how to safely operate while mixtures are present, methods of desensitization, as well as a live range demonstration. The handler will have the opportunity to imprint their K-9 on all the formulations created during the course. Following imprinting, the formulations will be utilized in practical exercises, including a post-blast environment. There is absolutely no alternative for this real-world based training. If you want to be operating at your optimal level and be ready to deal with the threat of improvised explosives and improvised explosive labs, you need to attend this course.

Cargo Screening for Explosive Threats ($350.00/person)

Cargo screening operations are a National Security priority and we offer a 3-day training event that involves classroom and practical applications for detecting and identifying possible explosive threats in a transit/cargo environment.  Our hides are based on real-world threat intelligence and contain live energetic materials. If you are getting ready to certify or if your company needs to be certified in-accordance-with TSA Cargo Screening standards, this training is for you.

Chess, Not Checkers: Thinking Like the Bomber ($350.00/person)

This 3-day course is designed for explosive or firearm detection dogs.  The objective of this training is to force the student into unusual situations where critical thinking is a must when dealing with various IED threats. Threats will be realistic in nature and the majority will be based on historical/recent real-world events, including VBIED, HBIED, PBIED, Buried IEDs and more. All threats will incorporate real (live) energetic material in order to produce the best representation of a threat that may be encountered as possible. This course is more than the old “put out the odor and find it” type training – you will work hard and learn quickly that you don’t always win.

Supervisors Course ($350.00/person)

This supervisor course offers will prepare the student to adequately maintain an effective K9 unit. Topics to be covered include: K9 legal updates, supervisory legal updates, handler selection, dealing with problem handlers, K9 selection, K9 unit do’s and don’ts, why K9 units fail, SWAT vs. K9 (liability vs. reality), critical incident review, K9 unit record keeping, class scenarios (a hands-on approach) and K9 deployment review. 

Advanced Dog Selection Techniques ($300.00/person)

This 3-day training course is built upon the research performed by Mr. Ford and Duke University. This research has produced a series of “brain games” or tests that can be utilized in conjunction with standard agency selection procedures to raise the percentage of candidates. These additional tests will identify dogs with a higher capacity for quick learning and memory retention, which will reduce the overall time required to train them in their respective disciplines.

Building a Better Dog ($300.00/person)

In this 3-day class we discuss the high demand for quality working dogs, which has dramatically increased over the past several years.  Due to this change, vendors and trainers are discovering that the selection pool contains younger and younger dogs.  This means agencies and K9 trainers must learn the best and most effective methods to successfully train and build a dog that fits your requirements. Moreover, this course will cover how to select a K9 and the best practices to imprint, train and problem solve as you build your next working dog. 

Search and Rescue (SAR) – Human Remains Tracking

This 3-day course is designed for practical training in a multitude of environments and disaster scenarios. We have multiple unique training areas that are perfect for SAR/HRD K9 training. Our 200-acre rock quarry contains various shot-up and burnt out vehicles, fallen debris and obstacles and several water features. Additionally, we have a simulated helicopter crash site with actual components, fuselage and more. Moreover, we have expansive wooded areas with dedicated LZ’s to conduct helicopter INFIL/EXFIL operations. 

K9 Live Course of Fire ($200.00)

Our 1-day live fire orientation course is conducted on our adjacent shooting range and will put K9 teams through a variety of exercises designed to familiarize the handler with the operation of a weapon while maintaining his dog, as well as desensitizing the dog to the sounds involved with firearm use.

*All prices are for training in Gettysburg, PA. Pricing will vary if training requires travel to a hosting agency/facility.