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Archive for the ‘K9’ Category

Dark Systems K9 Products Receive NATO Stock Numbers

Wednesday, January 17th, 2024

Several Dark Systems products have been assigned NATO Stock Numbers (NSNs). Dark Systems is world-leader in K9 helmets. The DarkFighter K9 helmet protects K9s in +40 countries and is used by hundreds of units and agencies. This K9 helmet is a modular system available with more than 20 accessories and modules (hearing protections, muzzles, mounts, strobe light, cameras) and offers advanced two-way audio communication in collaboration with the most famous tactical headsets manufacturers: OpsCore, Falcom, Invisio, 3M, Walkers, etc.

The products to receive NSNs are the DarkFighter K9 Helmet, accessories and payloads.

An NSN is a 13-digit numeric code, identifying all the “standardized material items of supply” as they have been recognized by all NATO countries including United States Department of Defense, and allows for any of the 31 NATO militaries to purchase the items on a “military catalogue” basis, significantly simplifying the procurement process.

The assignment of an NSN is also relevant to non-NATO customers in that it is considered to signify that the product has achieved a certain level of acceptance by the world’s most discerning military customers, the members of NATO and NATO’s allies.

Dark Systems expects that the receipt of these additional NSNs will assist its sales efforts in both NATO and non-NATO countries.

Aspetto Delivers Industry-Leading K9 Modular Vest System to the Norwegian Armed Forces

Monday, January 8th, 2024

The Norwegian Defence Material Agencies’ 15-year project seeking a tailored Modular K9 System has come to a conclusion in 2023. Upon delivery of the versatile system, Aspetto supplemented users with training and familiarization of the new kit, stimulating new and vital capabilities K9 Handlers will develop for the future.

Counter-IED operations remain a necessary tool in today’s war and continue to evolve through each conflict. With the guidance of Norwegian K9 Handlers and Leaders, team Aspetto and partners, Visual Engineering and Recon K9, developed a drop kit system that solved mission critical requirements.

This mesh-enabled TM-K9 solution emphasizes versatility across the various K9 verticals as the mission requires. GPS, IR, Thermal, and Audio functionalities allow users to communicate, locate, and gather valuable data in operation with the Military Working Dog.

The highly regarded tech is paired with Recon K9s DT alpha, ensuring proper fitment across various K9 breeds ranging in size and shape. This roping-rated vest is used globally in special operations.

The global solutions provider, Aspetto, will support Norway for years to come with its wide range of K9 products through several strategic partnerships. Aspetto invests and focuses on highly technical solutions like this to push the industry’s boundaries and ultimately protect our end users and their allies.

Aspetto has extended its global footprint to 38 countries with strategies to strengthen such partnerships and increase collaboration between nations.

Aspetto will exhibit the K9 MVS at SHOT show this month in Las Vegas. Stop by Booth #41250. Additionally, they will schedule meetings in their Venetian suite throughout SHOT – contact: for an appointment.?

Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs Joins Prestigious Congressional Initiative to Advance the Medical Service Dog Industry

Wednesday, January 3rd, 2024

 [WILLISTON, FL]- Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs has been selected as one of the two dozen medical service dog organizations nationwide to participate in a special initiative mandated by Congress. The primary objective of this program is to determine if the in-depth details outlined in this initiative for training and pairing service dogs meet the needs of permanently disabled service members and veterans. 

This initiative, directed by Danny Benbassat, Ph.D., Commander, U.S. Public Health Service, CofS, Assistant Professor, Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, and managed by the Medical Technology Enterprise Consortium OTA and acting Wounded Warrior Service Dog Program integrator Jeremy Ramirez, DrPH, MPH, Veteran, US Army, Assistant Professor of Health Informatics, California State University Long Beach Department of Health Care Administration, was created to maintain safety measures to protect service dogs and the public while using data-driven decisions to ensure continued improvement within one of the most vulnerable communities these organizations serve. 

As a leading medical service dog organization with highly advanced programs and over a decade of experience, Guardian Angel Medical Service Dogs will work with other organizations like themselves to collect and share their best practices, which will then be used to refine and improve the prototype guidelines for future organizations when it comes time to train and pair assistance/service dogs with qualified service members and veterans.

“Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs is proud to have been selected for this crucial project. They have been a highly sophisticated leader in this industry for nearly 14 years, bringing forth many programs above and beyond the current industry standards, thus raising the bar of excellence with our milestones and benchmarks,” said Carol Borden, Founder and CEO of Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs.

The current “prototype guidelines” will be tested by the Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs and other selected organizations where they can share best practices to refine existing guidelines, which will allow them to improve service dog programs. This initiative will evaluate the effectiveness of the suggested guidelines while examining a range of issues affecting service members and veterans with service dogs and those who train service dogs.

Once each organization has gathered empirical data on each of the protocols in this program, they will participate in focus group meetings for further discussion and analysis that will help build future guidelines and best practices related to the quality-of-service dog training, the optimal education and matching of service dogs with service members and veterans, and the safety to canines, service members, and the public.

“Our goal is to further shape the future of this life-changing, life-saving industry that deserves much more clarity and respect for the work these amazing dogs do every day. With this valuable opportunity to assist Congress, we will accomplish another enormous milestone in moving the service dog industry forward,” said Borden.

When the study concludes, the findings will be presented to Congress. Currently, it can take 2-10 years for someone to get a service dog. With the additional funding, Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs will be able to hire more people and enlarge their facilities, which means they will be able to pair more dogs more quickly with veterans and service members in need. 

To learn more about Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs, visit

Home for the Holidays: American Humane Reunites Retired Military Working Dog with Former Air Force Handler After Two Years Apart

Sunday, December 24th, 2023

SSgt. Mike Alcala Adopts K-9 Veteran John in San Antonio

Washington, D.C. – This week, American Humane reunited retired military working dog John with his former K-9 handler, U.S. Air Force Staff Sergeant Mike Alcala, in San Antonio, Texas. The once-inseparable pair have been apart for over two years and will now be together for the holidays as John finds his forever home to live out his retirement.

The 10-year-old German shepherd served as an explosive-detection dog at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii for eight years. He retired this month due to old age, ending a distinguished military career spent protecting civilians, his fellow service members, and high-profile VIPs, including American presidents, first ladies, foreign dignitaries, and more. A special retirement ceremony was conducted in his honor in Hawaii last week to celebrate his years of dedicated service. 

SSgt. Alcala was John’s handler for three years, during which time the two formed an unbreakable bond. They were separated in September 2021 when SSgt. Alcala was reassigned to another base. The moment he learned that John would retire, SSgt. Alcala reached out to American Humane for help transporting his best friend home for adoption.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to bring military working dog John home for the holidays and reunite him with his best friend,” said Dr. Robin Ganzert, president and CEO of American Humane. “American Humane is honored to help give this four-legged veteran the comfortable retirement he deserves after eight years of distinguished service to our country.”

“When I found out that John was up for retirement, of course, I wanted him so bad,” said SSgt. Mike Alcala. “I heard about American Humane through a buddy of mine, so I thought I would reach out and see what American Humane could do for me and John. They were gracious to help go pick him up in Hawaii, transport him back to me, and without me having to pay anything. It’s just been a blessing for us.”

In addition to transporting John from Hawaii to San Antonio, American Humane is also covering all of John’s veterinary care for the rest of his life.

During the emotional reunion on Wednesday, Dec. 20, SSgt. Alcala and his wife, Brittany Alcala, introduced their 10-month-old daughter to John—the newest member of the Alcala family. 


• K-9 handlers and their military working dogs form unbreakable bonds while serving our country. Unfortunately, however, they are often separated when one of them retires or is reassigned.

• When a military dog is retired from service, it can be difficult for the military to track down their latest handler for adoption, let alone figure out how to transport the dog home. The extensive process involves a lot of paperwork, headaches, and red tape, and the costs and responsibilities usually fall on the handler.

• American Humane handles the complex process of international and national transport of retired K-9 veterans on behalf of their former military handlers, who are thrilled to adopt them.

• Handlers reach out to American Humane for help reuniting with their K-9 counterparts. The organization covers the travel costs to transport the dog, as well as the dog’s ongoing veterinary care.

• Like humans, K-9 veterans often retire with health complications that require expensive medical care. The government does not cover these costs. That’s why American Humane covers all veterinary bills for the working dogs it brings home—ensuring these K-9 veterans get the comfortable, dignified retirements they deserve.

MARSOC Multi-Purpose Canine Handlers Conduct Desert Training

Wednesday, November 15th, 2023

CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. – Instructors with Marine Forces Special Operations Command recently hosted the final phase of training for prospective Marines working toward becoming multi-purpose canine handlers for the command, Oct. 1-20, 2023.

The course, which is also used as continuing education training for senior MPCs and handlers, encompasses all aspects of requisite skills that a special operations capability specialist needs to be successful while attached to a Marine Special Operations Company. Everything from tactical movements to engaging enemy combatants is done with the canines right by the side of their handlers.

The portion of the course known as the desert package culminates all of the training the handlers and canines had been through while also shifting the environment to one that is unfamiliar.

“We have individually done all of the things we are being asked to do here,” said a student handler. “The change in environment, to something you just won’t see in North Carolina, challenges us to put it all together and really make sure we understand our dog and their personality.”

MPCs and handlers within MARSOC have a high bar to achieve. In addition to being the only special operations component that uses subject matter experts in canine handling to work on the teams, the canines themselves have more asked of them than normal.

“MARSOC really sets itself apart because we train to proficiency in all three facets of canine work,” said a senior MPC handler. “all of our dogs are capable of apprehension, or bites, explosive detection, and tracking, requiring a higher level of training”

To be able to accommodate the heightened requirements for the MPCs, the handlers are trained differently as well.

“Our handlers are not just handlers, they are trained to be trainers,” an MPC handler added. “There is a level of knowledge that goes beyond just working with the dog. Our handlers are capable of going to a partner nation and training their dogs and handlers to proficiency as well.”

Upon successful completion of the training pipeline, both students and canines are fully certified to be a working MPC team. Those teams then continue preparations to join a company and eventually deploy alongside critical skills operators and special operations officers on a team.

The multi-purpose canine handler pipeline is open to those within the 5800 military police occupational field. Interested Marines should reach out to a MARSOC recruiter to learn more about the opportunity.

Story by Cpl Henry Rodriguez II 

Marine Forces, Special Operations Command

High Proof Media Company Launches IndieGoGo Crowdfunding Campaign for Groundbreaking Documentary Series: ‘The War Dog’s Story: Giving a Voice to the Voiceless’

Monday, October 2nd, 2023

October 2, 2023 – Many war stories have been told over the years, but rarely are those stories about man’s best friend, the military working dog. After speaking with many retired dog handlers, it became clear to us that the story of the working dog needed to be told. We started production on The War Dog’s Story back in July of 2022, and after 60 hours of filming, 39 interviews, 5 states around the country, and the potential for a 20-episode series, we need your help to cross the finish line.

For many months, we have worked on trying to get a major network to pick up the War Dog’s Story documentary. From the feedback that we received, the feelings were the same – there was no interest in war stories or the dogs in them. We decided to move forward on our own in order to get the War Dog’s Story completed and so we are now excited to announce our official crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo to honor these stories, and the dogs and people in them.

With the funds that we are able to secure, we will be completing the last of the interviews needed. How many episodes will go into the series ultimately depends on how much we’re able to raise with the crowdfunding campaign. Once the edit is complete, we’ll be submitting the documentary series to a distributor we have worked with previously. Other shows that we have produced have streamed on Amazon Prime, Tubi, and many other services in the past so we’re quite confident that The War Dog’s Story will end up on numerous streaming platforms as well.

Please help us spread the word to everyone you know about our crowdfunding campaign, which launches on October 2nd. Every like, share and contribution will help us cross the finish line. People can donate to the project via the IndieGoGo page or directly on the War Dog’s Story web site with our PayPal and credit card options. From the start, these stories that are being told are what matter the most to us and we could really use your help in letting everyone know about the campaign, the film and of course, the war dogs. 

Thank you,

Bri Coelho

Executive Producer, The War Dogs Story

High Proof Media Company

Where people can donate:

• IndieGoGo Site:

• War Dog’s Story Site:

• PayPal:

Social Media Platforms:

• Facebook:


• Twitter:

• YouTube:


5.11 Tactical Introduces Mission Ready Dog and AROS K9 Collections

Friday, September 15th, 2023

Designed for active and working dogs, the collections feature versatile lines of K9 products
COSTA MESA, Calif. (September 14, 2023) – 5.11 Tactical, the global innovator of purpose-built apparel, footwear and gear, has announced the release of its new Mission Ready™ Dog and AROS K9 Collections. Designed for active and working dogs, and their handlers, these all-new collections feature harnesses, leashes and collars that prioritize functionality, durability and comfort.

“We have a goal to offer dependable gear that our customers can trust for all aspects and missions in their lives and that lives up to our Purpose-Built Gear™ motto,” said 5.11’s CEO, Francisco J. Morales. “That goal, in addition to customer requests and feedback, led to the design of these new products that customers can depend on when they’re joined by their K9s, whether that’s for a weekend adventure or an active patrol.”

The Mission Ready™ Dog Collection was created with active dogs in mind and is highlighted by the Mission Ready™ Dog Harness ($45). Built with lightweight 330D nylon, a padded chest panel and adjustable straps, it was designed to offer comfort for any dog. Meanwhile, a low profile quick-release buckle, dual V-ring attachment points, a grab handle and a MOLLE loop panel offer added convenience for users.

Mission Ready™ Dog Harness
Dog owners seeking a dependable collar can look to the Mission Ready™ Dog Collar ($20). It’s constructed with nylon webbing, a low-profile Duraflex® side release buckle and an aluminum V-ring for leash attachment that combines to offer long-lasting reliability.

The Mission Ready™ Dog Collection is rounded out by two great leashes. The Mission Ready™ Modular Dog Leash ($35) is built with 1” Nylon webbing and a tubular webbing bungee system with a metal swivel hook for added flexibility and up to 7 feet of length. It can be used in handheld or waistband configurations with a padded handle and side release buckle that attaches to an accessory loop.

The Mission Ready™ Dog Leash ($30) offers 5 feet of 1” Nylon webbing with a metal swivel hook for attachment. A padded neoprene handle, accessory loop and secondary handle are incorporated to create added comfort and capabilities.

The AROS K9 Collection was built with input from professional K9 handlers to ensure functionality and reliability in even the most demanding situations. The AROS K9 Harness ($150) features a low-profile and minimalistic design that allows a free range of motion for K9s while the padded chest panel and adjustable straps distribute weight evenly to reduce strain and provide a comfortable, secure fit. Durability is ensured by nylon webbing with reinforced construction, a metal V-ring and an AustriAlpin COBRA® buckle. Additional features include a lay-flat grab handle for maximum control and a removable loop ID panel.

Mission Ready™ Dog Leash, AROS K9 Harness and AROS K9 Collar 1.0
In addition to a harness, the AROS K9 Collection offers the AROS K9 Collar 1.0” ($70) and the AROS K9 Collar 1.5” ($80). Both options feature rugged construction with durable nylon webbing and reinforced stitching and AustriAlpin COBRA® buckles. The AROS K9 Collar 1.0 offers a D-ring attachment point while the AROS K9 Collar 1.5 includes a metal V-ring for attachment. Additionally, the AROS K9 Collar 1.5 is designed with a lay-flat grab handle for maximum control from a minimal profile.

To learn more about the Mission Ready™ Dog and AROS K9 Collections or to shop its offering, visit

Creomagic to Provide Advanced Live Video and Communication Solution for Tier-1 Military K9 Unit

Monday, August 21st, 2023

Ness Ziona, Israel – August 21st, 2023 – Creomagic Ltd., a pioneering communications manufacturer based in Israel, has been awarded a significant contract by an undisclosed Tier-1 defense customer to provide lightweight tactical video and communication kits tailored for K9 operations. The contract is estimated at hundreds of units worth several millions of US Dollars.

K9 operational dog and its human handler – Illustration (Credit: Israel Defense Forces)

Creomagic will showcase its communication technology portfolio, including its newly released CreoHub HP man-portable radio, at the upcoming Defence & Security Equipment International (DSEI) exhibition in London, UK (September 12 to 15, 2023; booth H1-116).

CreoHub personal kit with wearable video camera and tactical computer

The new K9 systems will enable live video and voice transmission from K9 dogs to their human handlers and team leaders, ensuring uninterrupted near-real-time footage and voice in hostage release situations, search and rescue missions and other complex operational scenarios.

The contract is a result of a competitive test campaign conducted in various operational settings, ranging from private houses and public buildings to city markets, forestry, basements, and mountainous areas. Throughout these tests, Creomagic’s communication systems demonstrated law latency video transmission, telemetry and voice commands.

“K9 dogs play an invaluable role in military, law enforcement, and rescue units worldwide, often operating in environments that are inaccessible to human operators” noted Alex Shapochnik, CEO of Creomagic. “During these missions, our communication systems need to meet not only the highest performance requirements but also to provide comfort and ergonomic functionality for the dogs. Most importantly, we are proud to help our customers save lives”.