Home Explore Job Roles RAF Dog Handler

Job Description

Dog Handlers work with specially trained dogs and are responsible for their care and control, they can be used for tracking missing persons, searching for drugs and explosives, chasing criminals, crowd control and patrolling and guarding property. Dogs and Dog Handlers are used by the police, RAF, Army and Customs as well as private companies.

Entry Requirements

There are no set requirements, but you’ll need experience of caring for dogs.

You’ll usually need some training and experience in the organisation you wish to work for, like the policeBritish Army or Royal Air Force, before moving into dog handling.

To work in private security you'll need a Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence and clearance from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

You could gain voluntary experience with the National Search and Rescue Dog Association (NSARDA) before applying for dog handling training.

Career Path and Progression

Promotion opportunities will vary depending on the service or organisation that you work for. In the police and armed services you may have to move out of dog handling to get promoted to the higher ranks.
 
In security, you could go on to be head of canine services, where you direct teams of dog handlers. 

Related careers you may be interested in:

  • Animal care worker
  • Assistance dog trainer
  • Dog groomer
  • Kennel worker
  • Security officer

National Government Policy states that all students should have achieved at least a Grade 4 or C Grade in English & Maths at GCSE.  Achieving this minimum grade in these subjects will increase the opportunities open to you, support your future career development and prospects.

Students who do not meet this standard will be supported to continue to study English and Maths through full-time education or an Apprenticeship.

Required Skills

To be a dog handler you will need to have patience and a love of dogs. You will need to be able to judge situations which could be confrontational and deal with them effectively.

Starting Salary

£16,000 to £25,000

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