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Explosives Detection Canine Unit (K-9)

The Port of Seattle Police Explosives Detection Canine Unit is comprised of highly trained teams which consist of an officer/handler and a TSA canine. The teams are certified annually by TSA's National Explosives Detection. The annual certification consists of a stringent process where the team’s ability to detect explosives in various environments is tested.

The Canine Program serves as a frontline defense on America's war on terror, plays a key role in keeping air transportation safe for travel and commerce. Their speed and flexibility in discovering the presence of explosives and their ability to follow suspicious odors to pinpoint the exact locations give them a real edge over currently available mechanical detection devices in many circumstances. In addition, the canine teams are very popular with airport employees and visitors.

The officer/handlers and their dogs spend most of their time together on and off duty; the canines live with their partners and become part of the family.


  • Operational searches of airport terminal and baggage make up areas, aircraft, cargo bins and other areas as designated. Support the Bomb Disposal Unit as needed.
  • Work with other federal government agencies to provide explosive detection and augment SWAT in dignitary protection details.
  • Increased presences at the Seattle waterfront in support of cruise ship operations and other high profile events as needed.


  • Each team receives their basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. The basic program is 10 weeks in duration. 
  • Detection and obedience training are conducted daily to maintain proficiency.