Police Dogs [7 Interesting Things You Should Know]

police dog

Welcome dog lovers! Here I’m gonna reveal to you 7 interesting facts about police dogs. Hope you will enjoy the article. Keep reading!

Many people are amazed at what police dogs are capable of. So, it’s fair to have so many curiosities and misconceptions.

Without further ado, let’s get started!

1. Do police dogs get paid?

I know you don’t wanna know if they are getting paid in cash by any means. Because canines aren’t smart enough to understand about compensations; in fact, they don’t even care!

However, they respond well to immediate rewards, and that’s how human-canine companionship has evolved since ancient times.

Here is a short answer to whether police dogs get paid.

Police dogs do get paid as forms of medical care, shelter, food, grooming, training classes, grooming, insurance, treats, toys, leashes and collars, beds, and other essentials provided by the department. Often, the dog handler may receive an additional payment to cover the police dog’s expenses.

However, the good thing is police dogs get rewarded. Frankly, that is all they want, right? Even they don’t get a paycheck, these dogs are still considered officers.

2. Do police dogs get to play?

If you wonder whether police dogs usually have playtime, here is the best answer for you.

Of course, the police dogs get to play, but it’s somewhat less compared to other domestic canines.

The main reasons for this are the police dogs tend to have more Alpha mentality, which makes them better police dogs, and they are less likely to get opportunities to play while on duty.

However, the officers are very mindful to keep them beyond leash distances to maintain less interaction between each other.

A police dog usually lives with the handler’s home during off-duty time. So, if the handler owns another dog, this police dog will be so happy to play with that second dog, just like a regular canine does. Frankly, there is nothing wrong with that.

By the way, here are 13 reasons why Dobermans aren’t used as police or military dog.

3. Can you touch a police dog?

Everyone gets impressed by the performance of police dogs. Who wouldn’t love to touch and pet a well-trained police dog? However, are you allowed to do that?

If you really need to touch and pet a police dog, you must first obtain permission from the handler. Moreover, touching k9 is dangerous if the handler doesn’t introduce you to K9. Touching a military or police K9 without permission may result in you being found guilty of obstruction of police duty.

Therefore, no matter how eager you are in doing this is something that should never be recommended.

Have you ever seen TV reporters touch and pet police K9? That’s another proof that you’re allowed to touch police dogs with the right permission.

However, since they’re expected to and dedicated to doing certain duties, asking to pet a k9 isn’t something acceptable.

4. Do police dogs think they’re playing?

Almost every police and military dog are aware of what they are doing.

They don’t think they’re playing or anything else because k9s are much more like mission-driven by obeying their handlers.

In fact, like many TV programs, Interviews, K9 handlers suggest, police and military dogs have the ability to make precise and accurate decisions on their own to suit the situation.

Generally, K9s have the Alpha mentality, intelligent, courageous, eager to please their handlers, protective, aggressive when necessary. Therefore, no one can tell police dogs think they’re playing because they know exactly what they are doing, thanks to the excellent training they receive.

Previously we’ve discussed that police dogs get to play during their off-duty time. So, when they play, they’re in playing mode. Nothing else! Very impressive, right?

5. Can police dogs be around other dogs?

Many people see police and military dogs as well-trained and aggressive dogs. This is mainly because of influence of social media. But, hear me out. They are much more than that!

Here is the short answer for you.

A well-trained police dog does well around other dogs. They aren’t usually aggressive towards other dogs until they have been attacked. They may display aggression at other dogs in the early stages of training. Most K9s live with their handlers, and they get along well with the handlers’ pet dogs.

K9s dogs only become aggressive when they need to. In fact, very hardly ever seen a military dog become aggressive at an innocent person or a dog.

However, they might exhibit some level of aggressiveness at other dogs, especially if the dog isn’t tamed or new to the handler.

If you’re wondering why these canines are super smart, well socialized, be aware that it’s not a coincidence. Police officers consider numerous things when selecting a puppy for their K9 unit.

Here are some of them.

  • The puppy should be less aggressive and tamed nature.
  • However, it should be highly energetic.
  • Shouldn’t exhibit hyper activities.
  • Should be smart.
  • Energetic alone isn’t sufficient. They should be strong.
  • Minimum prone to health issues.
  • Highly intelligent.
  • Loyalty.
  • Keen instincts.
  • Magnificent olfactory abilities.

Coming back to the topic, we’ve discussed that police dogs live with their handlers, and they usually enjoy being around other home pet dogs, especially when they’re off duty.

Because they’re packed with energy and prefer to find a way to burn off their energy; therefore, they’re super enthusiastic when they have another energetic dog companion. So, generally, k9 handlers don’t keep their police dogs and home pets separately.

By the way, here are 5 common reasons why do dogs bite other dog’s legs with solutions.

6. Do dogs recognize police dogs?

Although this seems a funny question to answer, this is an inescapable question when considering dogs’ intelligence. Well, we have to ask it our dogs.

No, I’m just kidding!

Even it’s kind of difficult stuff to guess what the normal dog’s perspective of police or military dogs is, we can draw a conclusion by considering their behavior patterns.

Here is my answer.

Police dogs usually have the alpha mentality, and they’re trained to display alpha personalities around other dogs. So, they’re inclined to assert that dominance whenever it encounters other dogs.

However, this doesn’t necessarily mean something like being aggressive toward other dogs. It’s much more about their personality.

With regards to a regular dog, it isn’t gonna understand that a police dog is a police dog. However, the regular dogs tend to display some sort of submissiveness at the police dogs by reading their body language, the drive, and cues.

Generally, a dog with a lack of socialization is gonna behave around K9s in the same way it used to do around other common dogs.

However, it seems police dogs don’t mind those behaviors unless it becomes a threat to them thanks to their proper and lengthy training.

So, for the most part, they don’t even care about other regular canines when they are out in public places.

7. Do police dogs get treats?

This is a headache that has been on my mind for a long time. Why would K9 handlers use a ball or other toy as the reward method instead of just using clicker training (treat-based training)?

That’s a fair question to answer.

We all know our dogs become super-enthusiastic when they receive treats for performing a specific task, officially called “Clicker training.”

However, it seems K9 officers have the opposite view of that, or at least they accept the clicker training as a good training method, but only for normal domestic pet dogs, not for police dogs. But why?

The very first thing we wanna realize is that training a K9 dog is not the same way as training a house pet canine.

Although treat training, positive reinforcement (clicker training) seems to work well for an average pet dog, when we dive into a regular pet dog’s head, it performs that task gets rewards.

However, K9s are well mission-driven and should only obey their handling officers. Suppose your dog is responding well to the sit command in hopes of getting a treat; anyone in your household or even one of your friends can command him to sit.

Is that what we want from a Police Dog? Hell no!

K9 dogs should be able to perform tasks whether they receive rewards or not. That is how their mentality works.

As I mentioned earlier, many K9 dog handlers are trained to use the “Toy” reward method instead of treats.

In fact, some researchers have proven that a dog’s brain is going overdrive when it sees a treat or something it enjoys having. However, the impressive thing is its brain reaction is even higher when the owner pat on dog’s head, which means they are happier with the owners’ simple touch.

So, clicker training is just one way of training dogs. For the most part, police dogs don’t get treats.

Even clicker training or training with treats effective for normal domestic pet dogs, police dog handlers inclined to use “toy” reward method or they don’t even use a rewardable method as a K9 dog should be able to perform any task that they were asked to without expecting rewards from its handler.


Many dog lovers become impressed with police dogs and what they are capable of doing. Since many people have a common taste in police dogs and are curious to know certain things about K9 dogs, I’ve decided to come with a helpful article that contains 7 common questions about police dogs. Hope you enjoyed the article. If so, please consider leaving a comment down below and share your thoughts about these super impressive canines.


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