Tactical Guidelines in Utilizing Military Working Dogs

This guidebook offers the necessary tactical guidelines in optimizing the use of K-9 assets in our inventory. It aims to define tactical relationships with supported units to establish a comprehensive understanding of the K-9 capacity and ensure mutual support among all units concerned in accomplishing a common mission. It also intends to highlight the value of successful K-9 operations in the past while emphasizing the tragic lessons of the unsuccessful ones that have taken a toll on both our personnel and MWDs, and among the units and troops being supported as well. It seeks to illustrate tactical lapses from K-9 supported operations that have been repeatedly committed in the past so that we can adjust our tactics to an evolving battlefield and the ever rectifying attitude of the enemy. It attempts to reconstruct the picture of these operations and the corresponding lessons by trying to provide answers to the questions: what had happened, what was done, what should have been done, and what more needs to be done. The objective of this guidebook is not solely for "reading purposes", that is, to be read and be discarded after. Rather, it is to be digested in a manner that will give the reader an idea of how the K-9 assets function in various field conditions and react to the different levels of treatment and appreciation that the operating troops will bestow on them. The objective is to create cohesion, synchronize efforts, and harmonize tactical relationships. Ultimately, the proper application of this guide will shorten the operational gap and prevent further misunderstanding between K-9teams and the supported units. It is hoped that after reading it, stakeholders and end users alike will better understand the dynamics going on in and around the K-9 operating teams. That they should not be judged merely as "excess operational baggage" or measured by the degree of operational result that they candeliver will surely come as an insight to the conscientious reader. More importantly, the inherent capabilities that the K-9 elements possess will be recognized and therefore more persistently exploited at every opportunity to maximize the K-9 potential in every operational employment.Quality operational results will surely come once proper adherence to K-9 SOPs are systematically established among our forces. While operational results will much depend on various factors and cannot be attributed to only one element, what is more vital is that we have in our inventory another operational tool for ready utilization by our commanders. It is up to the brilliance of our field commanders and the tactical expertise of our small unit leaders to utilize and translate this tactical edge into tangible operational results. Therefore, it is a must, as the case may dictate, that K-9 operating units should be included in every type ofoperational planning. Once unleashed, the K-9 elements must be welcomed, supported, appreciated and encouraged to do their job.

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