K9 Units in Public Transportation: A Guide for Decision Makers

Document Type


Publication Date


Subject Area

planning - terrorism


Decision making, Deployment, Dogs, Explosives, Explosives detectors, Guidelines, Implementation, K9 programs, Public transit, Security, Terrorism


Heightened awareness of threats from explosives has led to active consideration of the use of dogs as a strategy for coping with threats against public transportation systems. This report will be of interest to transit general managers; police and security personnel; and operations, training, and human resources staffs. It will also be of interest to federal, state, and local law enforcement K9 program operators. It offers information on a variety of approaches to fielding K9 programs. This information is based largely on extensive interviews with nine public transportation agencies that currently deploy K9s and four agencies that disbanded their K9 programs in the last 5 years. Current K9 deployment practices, issues to be addressed in proposing the establishment of a K9 program, implementation issues, and specific information on explosives detection are discussed.


Permission to link to report given by TRB.