FORT HOOD, Texas (FOX 44) – This week, the Central Texas Working Dog Competition is taking place in Fort Hood. Nine different agencies will train, compete and learn from one another.
The event includes three days of joint training and two days of competition events. There are eleven narcotics teams and seven explosives teams.
Military and PD handlers are looking forward to networking as they work alongside other agencies, many for the first time.
Officer Jarima Rivera’s K-9 partner “Naruto” specializes in everything but explosives.
“The best part of being canine is the bond you build with the dog. Seeing them figure out problems, seeing them work. I think that’s one of the greatest things you can see.”
The 78-pound German Shepherd is off leash with a collar that allows Rivera to control him from over two football fields away.
The pair are set to deploy in a few months and Rivera is excited to see how he does in the real world, especially after this week’s training.
Coryell County K-9 Handler, David Ashley, has been a handler for about two years and considers his dog “Kracken” the most loyal partner he could have.
“There’s lots of little things that if we haven’t practiced on a regular basis or with some of the newer handlers, … now it’s an opportunity for them to learn and take it back to their agency and continue to practice.
The two train over four hours a week and keep getting better.
Competitions will wrap up on Friday and winners will be announced from the 18 canine teams.