The K-9 Unit consists of five dog teams and is assigned to the Field Operations Division under the direction of Sergeant Ben Sanders. The dog teams work regular shifts supporting uniformed patrol officers in their daily patrol activities. Unlike patrol officers, the dog teams are not assigned to a beat and can work the entire city. Each dog lives at home with its handler.
K-9 teams are a valuable tool in law enforcement. They are used for building searches, area searches, evidence detection, narcotics or explosive detection, tracking missing persons, criminal apprehension, and tracking fleeing persons.
If you would like to donate to the Greenville Police Department K-9 Unit, please make your check out to the Greenville Police Department K-9 Fund and send to the address below:
Greenville Police Department c/o Jeneen Graham (864-467-4379) 4 McGee Street Greenville, SC 29601
Each dog must complete a 600-hour training course with their handler before they are allowed to work the streets. After the initial training course, the dog and handler are certified through the North American Police Work Dog Association (NAPWDA). This is a yearly certification that each team must pass to continue working in the community. Dog teams train 10 hours per week to maintain their keen skills.
K-9s Saber, Leo, Sarge, Kylo and Rheumie are dual purpose patrol dogs. These dogs are skilled at drug detection, tracking, building searches, article searches, handler protection, aggression control and obedience. Leo also works with explosive detection units. An additional K-9, Scooter, works exclusively in narcotics detection. Working hand-in-hand with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies, the K-9 units provide safety and security to the citizens of the Greenville.
K-9 patrol vehicles are equipped with specialized equipment to transport our dogs and keep them safe. The vehicles are equipped with alarms that notify the handler of the temperature inside the vehicle to ensure that it is kept at a comfortable temperature for the dog. The vehicles are also equipped with remote "door poppers," which allow the handler to release their dog in situations where the handler is in trouble or is being attacked.