How To Become A Security Dog Handler?

Written by Holly Savage

10th January 2023

What is Dog Handler Security?

Dog handler security is a security service that involves the presence of both a security dog and security guards. Security dogs and their handlers serve as highly effective visual deterrents. Handlers work with security dogs to manage them as a safe security method. They undergo extensive training to ensure the safety and effectiveness of both the handler and the dog in various security scenarios

There are many different security measures that businesses can choose to protect their company. Security dogs are a great security method, but what about the people who train them? What is a security dog handler? We’ll be discussing this and more such as, how to become a security dog handler, how much security guards with dogs get paid, and what’s it like to work with a security dog.

What Is A Security Dog Handler?

dog handler is someone who works with specially trained dogs to help deter crime, prevent criminal activity, find missing people, and protect buildings. A security dog handler is a type of dog handler and is someone who specifically works in the security industry with dogs, such as a security guard.

How To Become A Security Dog Handler

Becoming a security dog handler is a quite similar process to becoming a security guard, but there are a few other things that you may need. We have listed these requirements in more detail.

A Security Licence

As all security dog handlers will be security guards, the first thing you will need to become one is a security guard licence. This is a necessary requirement for anyone who wants to work within the security industry. To obtain a security licence you will need to be at least 18 years old and have the right to work in the area you are planning on working in. You may also have to have a background check and a criminal record check.

NASDU Qualification

After you have earned your security licence, dog handlers may have to gain a NASDU qualification. This qualification is by an organisation called the National Association of Security Dog Users, and this is an off-the-job qualification that teaches you the basics of being a dog handler. The most common qualification by this organisation is a Level 2 General Purpose Security Dog Handler course. This course costs around £500 and normally takes about five days to complete.

In this course, dog handlers will learn:

  • How To Train A Security Dog.
  • About The Responsibilities They Will Have.
  • How Dogs Can Be Used To Protect People And Buildings.
  • And How To Control Security Dogs.

Access To A Vehicle

Although this is not an official requirement, it can be quite beneficial to have your own vehicle, which you can set up as your own dog unit. Some security companies may provide vehicles that you can use while others may not.

A Security Dog

Finally, the last thing a dog handler will need is access to a security dog. Some security firms may offer security dogs already while others may expect you to have your own. Many different types of dogs can become security dogs. Some of the best dog breeds for security dogs are:

 

  • German Shepherds
  • Great Danes
  • Akita
  • Doberman Pinscher
become a security dog handler

What Qualifications Do You Need To Be A Security Dog Handler?

To become a dog handler in security you won’t need any specific education qualifications, but you will have the right security qualifications. The security qualifications you will need are an SIA security guard licence and a NASDU qualification.

What Security Badge Do I Need For A Dog Handler?

To become a dog handler within security, you will of course need an SIA security guard licence. This licence is approved by the Security Authority Industry and will cost £190. To gain this licence, you pass specific security training courses and a first aid training course. 

Security-guard-dog-handler

Can Women Do Dog Handler Security Jobs?

Absolutely! Many female security guards will have guard dogs, and many will work as security dog handlers.

How Long Does It Take To Become A Dog Handler?

There is no exact amount of time that it will take you to become a security dog handler. It will depend on many factors such as how long it takes for you to gain a SIA security guard licence and how long it takes you to pass the Level 2 General Purpose Security Dog Handler course.

dog handler security

How Much Does A Security Dog Handler Earn?

How much a security dog handler earns will depend on many factors such as the location that they are working in. According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a security dog handler in the UK is £28,135 per year. 

What Skills Are Needed To Become A Security Dog Handler?

There are many skills needed to become a security dog handler. Some of these are:

 

  • To have a good relationship with dogs.
  • Good judgment-making skills.
  • Good alert skills.
  • Good patient skills.
  • To be empathetic towards animals.
  • To be able to work well both independently and with others.
  • To be able to stay calm in stressful situations.
  • Good communication skills.
  • To have the ability to train dogs.
  • Good fitness skills. 
security dog handler

What Is Involved In Being A Security Dog Handler?

A security dog handler will have many tasks and responsibilities to oversee. Some of these tasks are:

 

  • Take care of your security dog.
  • Attending a training course with your dog.
  • Working with your dog to search for lost or missing people.
  • Helping your dog detect dangerous weapons such as drugs, firearms, and explosives.
  • Do routine patrols around the premises.
  • Working with your dog to protect people, buildings, and valuables.
  • Using your dog to help control crowds.

What Is It Like Being A Security Dog Handler?

A lot of guards wonder what is like to work with a security dog, and well security dogs can be a huge advantage. Security dogs are a huge benefit to guards as they often help them provide businesses with a strong security presence. A well-trained security dog can help a guard quickly catch intruders, find missing people, conduct patrols around a site, and identify any potential criminals.

But although guard dogs can be a huge benefit – they are also a big responsibility. It is often the guard’s own responsibility to control and look after the security dog. Many security guards will often have to attend training courses with their dogs, and some guards will look after the dogs in their own homes.

security dog training

What Dogs Can I Use As A Dog Security Handler?

When choosing a security dog, you must pick a breed that is quite active and has good alert skills. There are many different types of dog breeds that security dog handlers will use. Some of the most popular dogs are German Shepherd, Dobermans, and Great Danes.

Is A Security Dog Handler Allowed Two Dogs?

Many people wonder if a dog handler who works in security is allowed more than one security dog. And honestly, there isn’t a clear answer to this question. There is no information online to suggest that a dog handler is only allowed one dog and that they can’t have two security dogs. However many security dog handlers will choose to work with one guard dog as they find it easier.

how to become a security dog handler

So, How To Become A Security Dog Handler

Overall, to become an SIA dog handler in the UK you will first need to pass security training so that you can obtain your SIA dog handling licence, and you will also need to have access to a security dog.

If you would like to stay up to date with all the latest security guard news, why not head over to our blog? Where you can find more articles about German Shepherd guard dogs and why dogs are good for security.

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