Bismarck Police Department uses calendar to raise funds for K9 trainings

Published: Sep. 24, 2021 at 7:12 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The Bismarck Police Department is raising money for their K-9 units with a Calendar. The fundraiser features the furry officers and give the public insight into managing the pack.

A training session this week features K9′s Bala with Sgt. Dan Salander, Mesa with Officer Joseph Benke, Echo with Officer Christopher Zabel and Titan with Sgt. Garner Jones from the Bismarck Police Department and Mace with Officer Matt Pappenfus from the Minot Police Department.

These dogs aren’t all bark, they perform essential tasks for the force.

“Lot of the drugs and the bad people we get to take off the streets, it’s because of them,” said Officer Joseph Benke, K-9 handler for the Bismarck Police Department.

The dogs are put through their paces. With training in eight key areas including searches, tracking, and apprehension.

“They have thousands and thousands and thousands of reps behind the scenes, just like with the K9s. People don’t see behind the scenes very often and this is what we do to make the dogs really, really good,” said Sgt. Lyle Sinclair, K-9 trainer for the Bismarck Police Department.

Now, the dogs are working on e-collar training to give officers greater flexibility in dangerous situations.

“Instead of having to use our voices and maybe give up our location to the suspect we can use the e-collar to direct them in different ways,” added Officer Benke.

Officers say they work with their furry partners upwards of 30 hours a month. So far this year, Bismarck K-9 units have been deployed around 200 times for patrol and narcotic work.

“I can see the work they put in. I remember how the dogs were when we got them; they wouldn’t sit, they wouldn’t let go of a toy, they wouldn’t come back, they wouldn’t do anything, and just watching them progress is a great pleasure to me. What’s even more fun to me is watching my guys help other young handlers,” said Sgt. Sinclair.

Now thanks to a creative calendar, the force hopes to continually hone the skills of their dogs.

The calendars raise money for equipment like decoy suits and bite sleeves and help fund different training courses for the dogs.

K9 Calendars will be sold at KT Animal Supply in Bismarck. Check BPD’s Facebook page for up-to-date information on when this year’s K9 calendar will be available.

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