SAN FRANCISCO -- A Marine sprinted towards the other end of the enclosure as Denny, the Belgian
Malinois military police dog, quickly traversed the distance in between him and
his target. Just as Denny prepared to launch and take down the Marine, his
handler screamed “Halt, Sit!” The crowd applauded as the Belgian Malinois
stopped on a dime at its handlers command during the Bark at the Park event Oct.
10, as part of San Francisco Fleet Week 2015.
Bark in the Park was
conducted as an opportunity for service members, San Francisco government
agencies and the citizens of San Francisco to display the different capabilities
that can be provided by military working dogs.
Oz Robinson, an apprentice
instructor with Canine Companions, said the intelligence displayed by the dogs
and the tasks they could accomplish after a little bit of training was
“Dogs are very, very intelligent creatures capable of
accomplishing almost anything as long as people take the time to train them and
take care of them,” Robinson said. “With a little bit of training these dogs
have been able to accomplish wondrous tasks that really aid everyone from
service members to people who suffer from disabilities.”
officers and other companies lead demonstrations to show the San Francisco
natives the unique capabilities the dogs possessed.
Ramirez, a dog handler with 1st Law Enforcement Battalion, I Marine
Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group, explained how obedience is an expected
characteristic of Marines and the dogs that they work with.
boot camp we as Marines are told we must show instant obedience to all orders,
and we must carry out those orders without failure,” Ramirez said. “The same
kind of mindset is instilled in our dogs at a very young age. We spend as much
time with our dogs as we can to ensure they are well taken care of and
completely capable of performing the tasks that are required of
While the demonstrations focused on the dog’s capabilities during
normal work periods, the capabilities dogs can bring to humanitarian assistance
and disaster relief are also incredibly important, Ramirez added.
event of a natural disaster such as an earthquake or a Tsunami, many people can
be lost or disabled and the dogs are really successful in tracking down people
so we can help them as quickly as possible,” Ramirez said. “After the disaster,
different service dogs are also able to help rehabilitate and assist people who
may have been injured or disabled from the disaster.”
Due to the
obedience instilled in the different variety of service dogs, they are able to
greatly assist in the recovery of lost personnel and the rehabilitation of
people who are injured in the event of a natural disaster.