After reading this, I was wondering to myself if these dogs could be used to sniff out Taliban or Al Qaeda operatives in population centers? This team of scientists have actually bred a dog to detect the scent plume of individuals, and the level of sensitivity and utility of these types of animals are only limited by the imagination of the handlers.
Here is one way I could envision using these dogs. Enemy combatants that think they can disappear into population centers, could technically be tracked into those population centers by teams using these dogs and tracker teams. All teams would have to do is patrol extensively through the crowds or set up check points and use the dogs to find folks that have trace explosive scents on their body. To be able to sniff out entire crowds, like dogs sniff cars now, would make the game of finding these guys a little easier.
These vapor wake or VW dogs could also be used to track down the IED teams or ambush teams. Tracker dogs could sniff the wires of the device or even the spent brass, locate the position of the team and further get a stronger scent. The tracking team would probably follow the tracks into a population center, and that is where the VW dogs come in. Once in the population center, do a cordon of the area, and then send in the VW dog teams. You could put them at check points, and send guys in to sniff the crowds. The basic idea is that the dogs could be used to sniff groupings of humans in order to seek out the combatant, thus taking away a prime hiding spot for today’s enemies. If the village doesn’t want to rat the guy out, the dog could also be used as leverage in the negotiations with the village leaders.
Either way, all and any thoughts should be given to using such animals for separating the enemy from the population, as well as finding combatants with explosives on them. -Matt
Could Owen, the Capitol Police’s Vapor Wake detection dog, be used for tracking operations in Afghanistan?
The Vapor Wake Detection (VWD) Canine Team is a standard explosives detection canine team with the additional ability and training to detect carried or body-worn explosives. The VWD canine samples the plume of air coming off a person and/or what they are carrying as the person passes through a choke point or within a crowd. The canines can also detect an explosives vapor-wake after the person has transited an area and follow the vapor-wake to the explosive source. The canines have been exceptionally successful in this form of detection in areas with a large congestion of pedestrian traffic without impeding traffic flow.
The canine is specifically bred and prepared its entire life to succeed at this type of work. The puppy enters the Detector Dog Raising Program upon birth. We engineer various environmental exposures and develop the puppy over the first 12 months of its life. We use primarily Sporting Breeds for this activity due to the close proximity to people the canine must work. Additionally, Sporting Breed can operate within a crowd causing less, if not any, disruption. After the puppy, or now adult canine, completes the Detector Dog Raising Program it returns to Auburn University (AU) Canine Detection Training Center (CDTC).
The canine receives six weeks of vigorous training at the Canine Detection Training Center before a handler is assigned. Upon the student/handler’s arrival they enter as a team into a 10-week basic explosives handler course. Upon graduating the basic course the team receives a minimum of two additional weeks of training in their operational environment. Continued training in the operational environment is critical to the team’s continued success.
Auburn’s College of Veterinary Medicine has several years of developing this program into what we feel is a strong and capable detection tool in the fight against terrorism. Additionally, we’ve developed evaluation procedures/guidelines for certification which ensure the team is performing at an extremely high rate of proficiency. Our Vapor-Wake work is copy write and patent pending.
Link to Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine here.
Vaper Wake Video here.
By Jordy Yager
It seemed like a normal morning last Wednesday as hordes of Senate staffers made their way through the Lower Senate Park to get to work by 9 a.m. But Owen, one of the U.S. Capitol Police’s newest hires, was weaving through the crowds, conducting serious undercover work.
Owen has been rigorously trained in a cutting-edge explosive-sniffing technique known as vapor wake. Owen also has a tail that wags. He is a black Labrador.