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Specialist canine search trainer’s course

SafeLane trains staff who demonstrate initiative and possibility; like Felly and Sim who just completed a canine search trainer’s course.

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SafeLane’s sniffer dogs are trained and cared for to the highest standards in the working dog sector. 

They work on projects globally to detect for threats including explosives, firearms and narcotics, and to keep SafeLane clients safe from intruders.

Ensuring these hard-working dogs receive the stimulation, care and ongoing development they deserve are the company’s dedicated kennel hands, handlers, trainers, mentors and instructors at the dog school and on project.

For the company’s Canine Technical Managers, Bob Crawford and Helen Clark, supporting these committed people and enabling them to be the best they can is an important part of their role.

One way they do this is by taking those staff members who demonstrate initiative and passion and training them and advancing their professional skills.

The most recent example of this was when Helen and Bob taught handlers Kabuka Ndjoloko Felly (Felly) and Simthembile Noqayi (Sim) to become trainers. 

Specialist canine search trainer’s course

Both Sim and Felly had been explosive detection dog (EDD) handlers for SafeLane on project, and during visits for quality assurance, both were identified as having significant potential and ambition.

As a result, Felly and Sim were offered the opportunity to travel to the UK and complete an intensive specialist search trainer’s course, the syllabus of which is accredited by The National Association of Security Dog Users (NASDU).

Speaking about the decision to invite Felly and Sim over for training, Bob explained that:

“SafeLane is committed to train and upskill our people not just for staff development and to support retention, but so we can have more experts in-house and on our projects to ensure the robustness of quality – which is one of the company’s core values.”

Helen added that:

“Ensuring staff have the best training guarantees consistency in terms of canine training standards and welfare – this is critical to SafeLane and its clients.”

On successful completion of the course, both Sim and Felly will now deliver continuation training to SafeLane’s operational specialist search dogs.

In addition, Sim, who will be returning to project in Somalia, will be able to mentor handlers from outside agencies.

Speaking about the training course, Sim, a former member of the South African police force, explained that the SafeLane way of training is far more effective than what he’d received before.

“The SafeLane way is to train for realism.  We go to venues, we conduct real searches – we don’t just repeat basic training exercises.  By training for realism dogs stay motivated and focused and handlers remain aware and on top of their game.  It’s very different from the police training I received because with SafeLane you’re being taught why, how and what you want to achieve.  Helen and Bob keep you involved in the training at all times.”

When asked what he’d gained from the training course Felly added:

“On day one Helen taught us this lesson - tell me and I will forget, show me and I will remember, involve me and I will understand.  This is the basis of how they trained us – they involved us all the time, we even had to give presentations and training demonstrations, we were videoed and photographed.  It was intense but amazing.  By us being involved all the time we learned so quickly and effectively.  I will take the saying and the method with me.” 

Upon completion of the course, Felly and Sim were presented with their pass certificates and challenge coins by CEO Adam Ainsworth who praised the passion, dedication and commitment shown by both gentlemen.

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