Canine Security: Is It Right for Your School?
Canine security teams allow schools to add a layer of security for their students and staff while maintaining a friendly day-to-day atmosphere.
Canine Security: Is it right for your school?
Have you ever wondered how effective canine security teams could be in your school?
How do you know if canine security teams would be right for your school?
This article will show you how canine security teams allow you to add a layer of security for your students and staff while helping maintain a friendly day-to-day atmosphere. First, let’s look at some interesting statistics behind police shooting of active shooters. Since police are professionally trained at shooting, it’s tempting to believe that their marksmanship is highly accurate. But the facts tell a different story.
According to a New York Times article:
- In all shootings—including those against people and animals and in suicides and other situations—New York City officers achieved a 34 percent accuracy rate (182 out of 540), and a 43 percent accuracy rate when the target ranged from zero to six feet away. Nearly half the shots they fired last year were within that distance.
- New York City police statistics show that simply hitting a target, let alone hitting it in a specific spot, is a difficult challenge. In 2006, in cases where police officers intentionally fired a gun at a person, they discharged 364 bullets and hit their target 103 times, for a hit rate of 28.3 percent, according to the department’s Firearms Discharge Report. The police shot and killed 13 people last year.
- In 2005, officers fired 472 times in the same circumstances, hitting their mark 82 times, for a 17.4 percent hit rate. They shot and killed nine people that year.
Are armed security guards better shots?
If professionally trained police officers have less than a 20 percent hit rate, you can be sure that an armed school security guard who doesn’t train as often as police officers will have a much lower hit rate. According to Reveal News, “Men and women who have never fired a gun in their lives can set off on patrol in uniform, wearing a badge and carrying a loaded weapon, with only a few hours of training, if any. In 15 states, guards can openly carry guns on the job without any firearms training at all. The results can be as tragic as they are predictable.”
Additionally, global security company AFIMAC’s Robert D. Shuster states: “The average armed security officer does not have sufficient, or frequent enough, training to effectively engage a hostile shooter under the typical active shooter ‘combat’ conditions. Given current training standards, they might hurt an innocent bystander or co-worker, or getting themselves killed. Mindset is also critical in this combat situation, and the armed security officer may not be able to muster the will to kill if necessary.”
What is a viable alternative to police and armed security guards?
Canine security teams.
Why are canine security teams such an essential complement to school security?
One of the unique aspects of security-trained canines is this simple idea: Canines don’t get psychologically confused like police or guards often do in life-threatening situations. Officer Steven W. Sturm, a dog trainer with the Baltimore Police Department, says it best: “We see somebody with a gun or a weapon … we will get out of the way. … Dogs react totally the opposite. They go. No matter what they see, they’re going to be going unless we call them off.” Let’s take a closer look at three reasons canine security teams are so effective in adding a layer of school security protection.
1. Dogs are a visual deterrent
Often, just the presence of a dog can deter someone from acting unlawfully or dangerously. Dogs can deter aggressive behavior by their presence and their bark. They can even help maintain order and keep a friendly atmosphere during school hours and activities.
School administrators might be wondering about the liability of dogs biting people. The simple answer is these canines won’t bite unless it’s a life-threatening situation. The canines used in schools are raised and trained to be both people-friendly and to go into defense mode as the need arises.
2. Response time: canines vs. police
Consider these statistics:
- As of 2013, the reported national average for police response time was 11 minutes.
- An in-house K9 security unit can greatly reduce or eliminate the typical response times of 30-45 minutes from State Police (if the unit is on duty when deployed).
This kind of security is unquestionably priceless. Canine security teams engage perpetrators immediately—while everyone is waiting for the police to arrive. This gives staff and students a few extra seconds or even minutes to escape a dangerous situation.
3. Speed of dogs
Canine security dogs can run up to 30 mph. Why is speed an important factor?
The perpetrator is dealing with lots of psychological factors in the heat of the moment. A fast-moving dog is extremely difficult for a perpetrator to hit accurately. Canines don’t have this barrier. Remember, the dog is naturally focused on anything or anyone moving. For decades, dogs have been used in combat to help protect our military personnel in dangerous and life-threatening situations. In most cases, the dog will prevail; it’s in its DNA to accomplish its goal—to make sure it defeats the perpetrator.
Is canine security right for your school?
A security dog is a major asset in any school. Why? Because it will act as a major visual and psychological deterrent for potential shooters—but canines can also neutralize the threat if called upon. These canines are trained to go after the threat without any hesitation.
Are canine security teams safe on a day-to-day basis?
Yes! These dogs are brilliant and stable and can be used in any hectic environment without fear of them unlawfully biting anyone. Security dogs (which are properly selected and trained) can make a difference in stopping—or curtailing—the horrific school killings that continue to make headlines across the country.
- Canines cannot be taken from you or used against you. (On the other hand, firearms, pepper spray and stun guns can.)
- Less liability (than armed security guards)
- Gives time and distance for people to leave a volatile situation.
Isn’t it about time we start looking at alternative, nonlethal ways to prevent deadly tragedies in our schools?
Should we look at alternative, nonlethal ways to prevent crime? Or are guns the only preventive measure?
As a security consultant for the past 15 years, I can tell you with certainty . . . there is a better way. I’ll leave you with this thought: I tell people I can call back a dog, but I can’t stop a bullet.
Mark Bosque is a security consultant and owner of K9 X-Factor. His company can reduce hospital and school security concerns with canine security teams. K9 X-Factor partners with hospitals and schools seeking an alternative approach to protecting their employees while reducing expensive liability issues related to having armed security guards.
K9 X-Factor is unique because your hospital or school gets “friendly first” dogs without sacrificing patients’, students’ and employees’ safety. Other canine security companies use dogs that are rewarded to go after a threat. While that can be useful in dangerous situations, those dogs lack the social temperament to be people-friendly.
K9 X-Factor dogs are friendly with all people—including children and seniors—and are trained to address threats instantly. Visit our website for more information: http://k9xfactor.com
Whether you want to buy a canine or lease a security canine team from K9 X-Factor, message me to see if a canine security team is right for you.