Canine Unit

Police Service Dog Unit Canine Photos

Police Service Dog Unit

The Iowa State Patrol Police Service Dog Unit (PSD Unit) was established in 1992 after a
generous donation from Mr. Jim Hawk (Jim Hawk Trailer Company). Five dogs were originally
purchased and the handlers and canines went through a four-week training academy to become
certified.  Since the start of the Police Service Dog Unit, the Iowa State Patrol has had 29 canines
in service since 1992. Many of the dogs that started in the program have been retired or
passed.  Currently, there are seven active certified dual purpose canines in service. The breed of
canines currently being used are Belgian Malinois, German Shepherd, and Dutch Shepherd.  The
7 canines, with their handlers, have conducted and passed a sixteen week Narcotics Detection
and Patrol Camp.  The active Handler/PSD combinations are certified under Nebraska State
Standards Certification obtained through Nebraska State Patrol.  The handler/PSD combinations
must complete a yearly certification to stay certified as a team.  

Currently, the active 7 Police Service Dogs are located across the State. The assigned handlers are responsible for the PSD’s continued training and maintenance.  The canines are housed at each handler’s house and are the full responsibility of the handler.  The Iowa State Patrol Police Service Dog Unit has been responsible for numerous illegal drug seizures, successful tracks of criminals and missing persons, and apprehensions of violent criminals. Iowa State Patrol PSD Unit will continue to serve the citizens of Iowa each and every day.  When the canines are retired, the Trooper/Handler can elect to have the animal become part of their family full-time.


*Narcotics Detection
*Handler Protection


*Evidence Recovery

*Criminal Apprehension

*Building and Area Searches

*Crowd Control

*Tactical Deployment