Nine new Police dog teams, including one from Whakatāne, are ready for action after graduating from the New Zealand Police Dog Training Centre in Trentham yesterday.

They along with four teams from NZ Customs took part in the combined ceremony, the largest to be held this year. 

Five of the seven patrol dog handlers graduated with their first operational dog and the canine line-up included F litter siblings – sisters Frankie and Fi – along with brother Faze. 

With 35 years of experience as a dog handler, Auckland’s Senior Constable Dave Templeton is still enthused about his job, graduating with Costa, the eighth dog he has worked.   Tasman District’s Sergeant Craig Moore graduated with Lokkie, his fourth dog.

Senior Constable Dave Robison, Whakatane, and Sergeant Bruce McLeod, Northland, added to their skillset, graduating with Labradors trained to detect drugs, cash and firearms.

Acting Assistant Commissioner Mike Johnson congratulated the handlers, telling them dogs are an integral part of policing.

“While our dogs are often the first to go towards danger, their handlers are not far behind because one doesn’t operate without the other.”

The new patrol teams are:

  • Sergeant Craig Moore, head of Tasman Dog Section, and Lokkie (18 months)
  • Senior Constable Dave Templeton, Auckland, and Costa (2 years)
  • Constable Alex Baddock, Palmerston North, and Zappa (2 years)
  • Constable Simione Volavola, Christchurch, and Frankie (2 years)
  • Constable Cain Falconer, Wellington, and Kong (4 years)
  • Senior Constable Jared Booth, Hawke’s Bay and Fi (2 years)
  • Constable Dan Waluszewski, Nelson, and Faze (2 years).

The new detector teams are:

  • Senior Constable Dave Robison, Whakatane, and Villa (12 months)
  • Sergeant Bruce McLeod, Northland, and Ripper (2 years).

Caption (group photo): The nine new teams from left to right: Sergeant Craig Moore, Senior Constable Dave Templeton, Constable Alex Baddock, Sergeant Bruce McLeod, Senior Constable Jared Booth, Senior Constable Dave Robison, Constable Cain Falconer, Constable Simione Volavola, Constable Dan Waluszewski.