The South Simcoe Police Service has had a Canine Unit since 1998. The Unit was started with one canine team. The police service and the community saw the advantages of having a police service dog and with an increasing number of deployments the Unit grew to two canine teams in 2006.
The police dog teams train extensively so they are ready to assist patrol officers, the Criminal Investigations Bureau, and the Emergency Response Unit in locating persons associated with police occurrences. South Simcoe Police Service’s police dogs help police do their job safer and faster than they would be able to do without them. Police service dogs save the department hundreds of human-hours every year due their special abilities.
Police dogs willingly go into areas officers are not able to. Police rely on police dogs to use their special abilities to help us locate suspects, evidence, narcotics or missing people quickly.
Police canines use all of their senses to locate their quarry. The most powerful sense they use is their nose, which is thousands of times more sensitive than a human's. The next most powerful sense a dog possesses is their hearing, which far exceeds human capabilities. Canine searches can be completed much quicker than human searches, regardless of lighting and environmental conditions, and greatly reduce the risk to human officers.
South Simcoe Police Service’s two current police service dogs are German Shepherds imported from Europe. Their initial training was conducted with the assistance of the York Regional Police Canine Unit and took approximately three months for each dog. The canines have to pass a battery of tests and assessments to be able to serve our community.
Each police dog handler is selected after a rigorous, competitive examination process including an intense physical preparedness assessment. They must serve in the capacity of a police constable for at least 5 years. Their dedication and pride in the Canine field and the South Simcoe Police Service is admirable.
The handlers in the Canine Unit share a strong bond with their canine partners. Every department handler takes his or her canine home. For the handler, it is like bringing a family member to work with you each and every day.
PSD Ronin and PC Matt Tomlin
Ronin is a 5 year old German Shepherd from Slovakia. Ronin works with great intensity and diligence and has been very successful since he became operational. He is always full of energy and loves to work. He serves as a general purpose dog and is also trained in narcotics detection.
Ronin lives with his handler Police Constable Matt Tomlin. They have served together as a team for over 4 years.
PSD Garan is a 7 year old pure bred German Shepherd who came to Canada from the Czech Republic when he was 17 months old. Since arriving here, he has been working and living with his handler, Police Constable Joe Ferreri.
After completing the required training, PSD Garan was put into operation in June 2007 and is trained as a general purpose dog, as well as in narcotics and firearms. PSD Garan loves to work and is a very high energy dog and along with PC Ferreri are very successful in their time together.