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Airmen, Soldier MWD handlers improve mission effectiveness through joint training

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673d Security Forces Squadron, practice searching for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dog teams are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673d Security Forces Squadron, practice searching for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dog teams are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Army Pfc. Ian Smith encourages military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, after successfully detecting simulated hidden explosives during K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dog teams are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Army Pfc. Ian Smith encourages military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, after successfully detecting simulated hidden explosives during K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dog teams are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, practice searching for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dog teams are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, practice searching for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dog teams are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, practice searching for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The military working dog teams are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, practice searching for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The military working dog teams are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Security Forces Airmen conducted the K-9 training with their Army counterparts, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Security Forces Airmen conducted the K-9 training with their Army counterparts, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Army and Air Force military working dog teams assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment and the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, respectively, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The purpose of the K-9 training was to adapt the dogs to possible real-world conditions they might encounter as well as practice detecting possible hidden explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Army and Air Force military working dog teams assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment and the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, respectively, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The purpose of the K-9 training was to adapt the dogs to possible real-world conditions they might encounter as well as practice detecting possible hidden explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Army Pfc. Ian Smith and military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Army military working dog handlers conducted the K-9 training with their Air Force counterparts, assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Army Pfc. Ian Smith and military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Army military working dog handlers conducted the K-9 training with their Air Force counterparts, assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

Airmen assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron pack smoke grenades while preparing to conduct military working dog training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Security Forces Airmen conducted the K-9 training with their Army counterparts, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

Airmen assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron pack smoke grenades while preparing to conduct military working dog training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Security Forces Airmen conducted the K-9 training with their Army counterparts, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Army Spc. Jared Shultz, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, interacts with his military working dog, Teddy, while waiting to conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Army military working dog handlers continually train with their K-9 counterparts to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Army Spc. Jared Shultz, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, interacts with his military working dog, Teddy, while waiting to conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Army military working dog handlers continually train with their K-9 counterparts to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Benjamin Sweeney, a military working dog handler assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, waits by his police vehicle before conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Security Forces Airmen continually train with their K-9 counterparts to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)
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U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Benjamin Sweeney, a military working dog handler assigned to the 673rd Security Forces Squadron, waits by his police vehicle before conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Security Forces Airmen continually train with their K-9 counterparts to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies, and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Pena)

U.S. Army military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, chews on a toy after successfully detecting simulated hidden explosives during K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)
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U.S. Army military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, chews on a toy after successfully detecting simulated hidden explosives during K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Army military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, searches for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)
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U.S. Army military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, searches for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Army military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, searches for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)
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U.S. Army military working dog, Faro, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, searches for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Army Spc. Jared Schultz and military working dog, Teddy, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, share a moment of levity after successfully detecting simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)
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U.S. Army Spc. Jared Schultz and military working dog, Teddy, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, share a moment of levity after successfully detecting simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Army military working dog, Teddy, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, searches for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)
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U.S. Army military working dog, Teddy, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, searches for simulated hidden explosives while conducting K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Military working dogs are trained to respond to various law enforcement emergencies as well as detect hidden narcotics and explosives. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Army Spc. Jared Schultz and military working dog, Teddy, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Army military working dog handlers conducted the K-9 training with their Air Force counterparts, assigned to the 673d Security Forces Squadron, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)
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U.S. Army Spc. Jared Schultz and military working dog, Teddy, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Army military working dog handlers conducted the K-9 training with their Air Force counterparts, assigned to the 673d Security Forces Squadron, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Army Spc. Jared Schultz and military working dog, Teddy, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, conduct K9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Army military working dog handlers conducted the K9 training with their Air Force counterparts, assigned to the 673d Security Forces Squadron, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)
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U.S. Army Spc. Jared Schultz and military working dog, Teddy, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, conduct K9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Army military working dog handlers conducted the K9 training with their Air Force counterparts, assigned to the 673d Security Forces Squadron, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673d Security Forces Squadron, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Security Forces Airmen conducted the K-9 training with their Army counterparts, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)
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U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Joe Burns and military working dog, Ciko, assigned to the 673d Security Forces Squadron, conduct K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. The Security Forces Airmen conducted the K-9 training with their Army counterparts, assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment, to keep their teams flexible to respond to law enforcement emergencies and for overseas deployments. (U.S. Air Force photo/Alejandro Peña)

Army Staff Sgt. Daniel Turner, right, debriefs Army Pfc. Ian Smith after successfully detecting hidden simulated explosive devices during K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Turner is his detachment’s kennel master and Smith is a dog handler assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment. Air Force photo by Alejandro Pena
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Army Staff Sgt. Daniel Turner, right, debriefs Army Pfc. Ian Smith after successfully detecting hidden simulated explosive devices during K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Turner is his detachment’s kennel master and Smith is a dog handler assigned to the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment. Air Force photo by Alejandro Pena

Teddy, a military working dog, frolics after successfully finding a hidden simulated explosive device during K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Air Force photo by Alejandro Pena
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Teddy, a military working dog, frolics after successfully finding a hidden simulated explosive device during K-9 training at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, March 17, 2016. Air Force photo by Alejandro Pena

JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska --

Airmen with the 673rd Security Forces Squadron and Soldiers with the 549th Military Working Dog Detachment participated in joint explosives-detection training on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson March 17.

 

While the training may be performed regularly by the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force, the joint aspect is what made this event significant.

 

"In the past we've tried to do [joint training] monthly or a couple times quarterly, but due to manning and [other restrictions] here, it hasn't taken place," said U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Daniel Turner, 549th MWD kennel master.

 

"We're trying to build that relationship back up and get everyone on track as far as ... being able to work together," he said. "We are hoping to have joint training as something that will happen in a much more regular basis."

 

Since JBER is a joint installation, there is a greater need for the coordination of military police and security forces.

 

According to Sam Finney, 673rd SFS kennel master, it's paramount for dog handlers from both branches to know what each side is going to bring in the event of an emergency.

 

The training was set up very much like a search that would be performed in a remote village, to mimic what dog handlers may experience in a deployed environment, said U.S. Air Force Spc. Jared Schultz, a 549th MWD dog handler.

 

"Very few times are we actually going to search an RV lot or a warehouse in a deployed environment," he said. "Not that it couldn't happen, but it's not as likely. This is why we train all these different areas."

 

Further importance of joint training lies in the ability to share training practices where service members can see training methods in practice that appeal to different learning styles.

 

"Just like a person, [all dogs learn differently]," Schultz said. "Someone might be a visual learner where another may need to hear something. [This is the same for a dog] and it's all about how you can get through to the dog. When you get to see other people [train] you get to see some of their ideas or concepts played out. Even if they don't work for you and your dog, you can learn from them and ... you have a tool that you can add to your toolbox. In the end, it's up to you what tools you put into that box."