Inaugural AKC/USPCA K9 Detection Dog Challenge to air on ESPN 2

United States Police Canine Association (USPCA) narcotics dogs and explosives dogs will compete to find their illegal substance the quickest


By Police1 Staff

In the first-ever American Kennel Club (AKC)/United States Police Canine Association (USPCA) K9 Detection Dog Challenge, 20 law enforcement K-9s from across the nation will showcase the important role working dogs play in keeping communities safe.

The inaugural event, which will take place at the PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina will be broadcast on ESPN2 Sunday, Nov. 28 at 10 p.m. E.T. 

“We are thrilled to host this exciting event with the USPCA,” said AKC Executive Secretary Gina DiNardo. “It’s amazing to see these dogs in action and show viewers their training and precision. We can’t wait to share it with the ESPN2 audience.”

Ten teams of United States Police Canine Association (USPCA) narcotics dogs and 10 teams of USPCA explosives dogs will be in attendance, with breeds ranging from the Belgian Malinois to German Shorthaired Pointer to Weimaraner. The dogs compete against one another to each find their illegal substance the quickest.

The event will pit the best narcotics and explosive detection dogs and their handlers against other law enforcement teams from across the country. Teams will navigate obstacles and sort through distractions to find the hidden items. They are scored on the accuracy of their search, the perfection of their alert (telling the handler where the hide is), and the find itself (a combination of the ability of the dog and the handler to accurately tell judges where the hide is located).

Competing on behalf of New York City Department of Correction's K9 Unit is Correction Officer Lawrence McArdle and K9 Zoey.
Competing on behalf of New York City Department of Correction's K9 Unit is Correction Officer Lawrence McArdle and K9 Zoey. (Officer McArdle)

A team from the New York City Department of Correction's K9 Unit is one of the participants. Competing on behalf of DOC is Correction Officer Lawrence McArdle and K9 Zoey, who work to detect contraband on Rikers Island. McArdle was recently honored with a Meritorious Duty Medal for helping to capture an individual on Rikers Island who escaped a housing facility in June of 2020. Most recently, McArdle and Zoey won a citation award at USPCA Region 7 Detection Trials. 

“I’m so excited to participate in the 2021 Inaugural AKC/USPCA K9 Detection Dog Challenge with my pal Zoey,” said McArdle. “We will do our absolute best to bring home the grand prize!

Check your local provider for ESPN2 channel information. To learn more about AKC events, visit www.akc.org. To learn more about the USPCA, visit https://www.uspcak9.com/

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