Students enrolled in the Public Safety and Justice Program at Oswego County BOCES met two very special four-legged members of the New York State Police K9 Unit and learned that the phrase, “man’s best friend” is no cliché.
Mark Bender, the students’ instructor and a full-time New York State Trooper brought his canine partner, Mandin in to the class and was joined by fellow Trooper Kevin Conners, who brought his canine partner, Lynde.
Mandin, a Czech shepherd is a patrol dog trained to search for narcotics and trained in handler protection, criminal tracking and apprehension. Lynde is part of the New York State Police Bloodhound Team and is a trained scent-specific trailing dog.
Troopers Bender and Conners talked to students about the training program that they completed with their respective K9 partners and how their K9 partner assists them in various on-the-job situations.
The two troopers and their partners staged a few typical scenarios, giving students an opportunity to see how K9s assisted in trailing and apprehending a criminal.
Instructors for the Public Safety and Justice Program are highly-trained professionals currently working in the field, allowing the program to stay current and better prepare its students for today’s workforce.
Trooper Bender is in his 12th year at OCB and his 20th year with the New York State Police.