HomeNewsArticle Display

MacDill’s military working dogs, handlers train at Adventure Island

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Damion Morris, a military dog handler assigned to the 6th Security Forces Squadron, tests the water with his military working dog, Lleonard, at Adventure Island, Tampa, Fla. Oct. 29, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Damion Morris, a military dog handler assigned to the 6th Security Forces Squadron, tests the water with his military working dog, Lleonard, at Adventure Island, Tampa, Fla. Oct. 29, 2018. Handlers performed bite drills designed to slow down or stop suspects attempting to escape into a body of water. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Scott Warner)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Greene, a military dog trainer assigned to the 6th Security Forces Squadron, practices water aggression training with 6th SFS military working dog, Lleonard, at Adventure Island, Tampa, Fla. Oct. 29, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Greene, a military dog trainer assigned to the 6th Security Forces Squadron, practices water aggression training with 6th SFS military working dog, Lleonard, at Adventure Island, Tampa, Fla. Oct. 29, 2018. This training allows military working dogs to become more confident working in water environments and prepares them to take on any mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Scott Warner)

U.S. Air Force 6th Security Forces Squadron military working dog, Lleonard, shakes off water during a water aggression training exercise at Adventure Island, Tampa, Fla. Oct. 29, 2018.

U.S. Air Force 6th Security Forces Squadron military working dog, Lleonard, shakes off water during aggression training at Adventure Island, Tampa, Fla. Oct. 29, 2018. MacDill’s military working dogs and handlers took advantage of the water aggression training to overcome the dogs' limited exposure to water. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Scott Warner)

MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (AFNS) -- From vigorous barking to dashing through water-based obstacles, military working dogs and handlers with the 6th Security Forces Squadron participated in water aggression training to maintain full spectrum readiness at Adventure Island amusement park in Tampa, Florida, Oct. 29.

“We have 7.2 miles of coastline around MacDill and we always have to be ready to patrol it,” said Tech. Sgt. Matthew McElyea, a military dog trainer assigned to the 6th SFS. “We never stop training and it’s our job to keep our dogs engaged and excited about the job we accomplish together.”

Additionally, eight Tampa law enforcement agencies unleashed their own K9s during the joint training exercise.

“We do this training annually,” said Eddie Durkin, Tampa Police Department public information officer. “Some dogs don’t get enough exposure to water-based scenarios and this type of training gets them more confident and comfortable in the water.”

MacDill’s military working dogs, Lord, Zeno and Lleonard, participated in a wave of training scenarios involving suspect apprehension and deterrence in an unfamiliar environment.

“We are always looking for new ways to evolve our training and be ready for any contingency situation,” McElyea said.

The event simulated three water-based scenarios, from an obstacle course to waves and large depths of water. The training fully encompassed what a military working dog might experience in the field.

“Lord was outstanding in every water-based evaluation, and Zeno and Lleonard made significant progress throughout the day,” McElyea said. “This situational training is invaluable when our dogs need to be ready to respond to anything.”

Whether it’s inside of the base or at a point of entry, MacDill’s working dog handlers and their partners continuously practice detection, bite drills, obeying commands and apprehending suspects.

“We are the best at narcotic and bomb detection and deterrence,” McElyea said. “But our local law enforcement agencies are experts in patrol, so collectively these joint training exercises are mutually beneficial since we can learn so much from one another.”

Engage

Facebook Twitter
#MoodyAFB #Airmen test their #CBRN survival skills in readiness exercise Flying Tiger. https://t.co/RfFk69gMPJ https://t.co/mLjvve07WA
RT @PACAF: .@374AirliftWing #Airmen conduct rapid airfield damage repair training, enhancing capabilities and improving infrastructure resi…
#Airmen from the @116ACW deployed to distribute supplies for #HurricaneMichael relief. @AirNatlGuardhttps://t.co/O4ojoyiRgy
RT @SecAFOfficial: Thanks to @elmo & @AbbyCadabbySST for stopping by to help me encourage kids to reach for the stars. Fueling the natural…
#TeamOsan #Airmen develop a new approach to weapon loading operations https://t.co/ByhGRF008j https://t.co/UFCw8AuPjI
.@USArmy and @USNavy helped out with the relief efforts to restore operations @TeamTyndall after #HurricaneMichael.… https://t.co/4VZwL5IvPb
#Airmen at #RamsteinAB conduct readiness missions regularly to test preparedness and keep their skills up.… https://t.co/VQgArqTFAx
The @366FW is building to enhance structures, mission readiness equipment and recreational areas for #Airmen around… https://t.co/HlZJbT22LI
The @366FW is building to enhance structures, mission readiness equipment and recreational areas for #Airmen around… https://t.co/Hmody7Bto3
RT @AirmanMagazine: CMSAF Kaleth Wright defines resiliency as the ability to move through the hardships and storms of life. Airmen at @Tea
Watch LIVE today at 1 p.m. EST at @ACCCommander Facebook page for an update on @325FWTyndall! https://t.co/VnJtYUHbf0
For the first time ever, the 2018 #AlphaWarrior challenge will be an inter-service competition with #Airmen,… https://t.co/FlJUv9wi60
Wanting to impact #Airmen on a broader scale, this #RamsteinAB went from NCO to #AirForce Officer.… https://t.co/kITsW9Ni78
When his teenage neighbor was struck by lightning, this @TeamEglin #Airman came to the rescue!… https://t.co/9Di7bn7Ctg
RT @GenDaveGoldfein: This change gives our #Airmen the opportunity to make decisions that will provide greater stability to their families…
RT @AirmanMagazine: In order to provide cutting edge capabilities at a rapid pace to the warfighter, the @usairforce has formed Kessel Run…
The sound of #freedom: If it’s in the air, maintainers put it there. @Buckley_AFB #Airmen take great pride in what… https://t.co/TcGDXWpPig
BMT curriculum changes to focus on inspiring, developing #Airmen. @JBSA_Official https://t.co/IHXXQMuQqf https://t.co/uArRrjM68F
RT @AFW2: #DidYouKnow This November marks the 10th Anniversary of @WarriorCare Month. For information, photos, stories and events, visit:…