The Nigerian Air Force said it has trained several dogs and their handlers under the initiative ‘Military Working Dogs’ Operation’.
The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar revealed this on Friday during the graduation of NAF K-9 handlers at NAF base in Kaduna.
The dogs according to Abubakar would also be deployed in aid of civil authority, most especially in times of disaster.
He said that NAF came up with the dogs operation following a gap analysis conducted to determine basic requirements for the protection of all NAF assets.
“The Air Provost, being one of such directorates, has received and is still receiving attention in this regard. Today’s event signifies one of the fields in which the capacity of the Air Provost Specialty is being developed.
“The personnel before you, have undergone a 13-week intensive advanced K-9 training, with 10 weeks of the training conducted at the Paramount K-9 facility overseas, and 3 weeks conducted in-country, to situate the skill sets acquired to our local requirements.
“Among the Military Working Dogs and handlers graduating today, 10 are trained in explosive detection, five are narcotic detection dogs, while five are special operations dogs capable of explosive or narcotics detection, as well as tracking of adversary movements and positions within an area of operation,” he said.
Noting that NAF had earlier in 2016 inducted 20 Military Working Dogs with narcotics and explosive detection capabilities, Abubakar said that the import of inducting special operations dogs in the second batch of training were to provide the Air Provost with the capacity and capability to conduct specialised policing functions in support of the Special Operations Command.
“That would increase the Provost’s potential to detect, track and provide early warning of adversary positions while also providing the psychological effects of dogs on adversaries.
“Thus, K-9 development is projected to be a force multiplier to the operational exploits of the NAF’s aircrew and ground personnel,” he said.