The Basic Canine Training Course is 4 weeks (160 hour) in length and is an accredited training program through the Fox Valley Technical College. The handler and his K-9 partner perform extensive training exercises on topics such as canine obedience; article searching; field searching; courtroom testimony and 4th amendment considerations; obstacle course training; crowd control; and techniques for apprehension and pursuit. There are also written tests that must be completed by the handler. Upon successful completion of this training program, the K-9 team is awarded with a certificate from Fox Valley Technical College. To receive certification, the K-9 team must perform very strict standards that have been developed by STK and adopted by the college. These standards are also very similar to standards set forth on a national level and recognized throughout the country for police canine teams.
Training was an on going and never ending process. To maintain all of Qai’s abilities to perform well in the law enforcement environment, monthly training was conducted both at the department and periodically at the training kennel. The K-9 team must certify annually so that they are able to document for a court of law specific trained disciplines. This is significant and unique because the K-9 team is capable of developing “probable cause” for purposes of conducting both warrant and warrant-less searches in certain circumstances. Therefore, the K-9 handler must be ready to provide specific training documentation to a court of law in the event an arrest or the development of probable cause is ever challenged.