DVIDS – News – Military Working Dogs and Handlers Receive Medical Evacuation Training

WIESBADEN, Germany – Wiesbaden Veterinary Treatment Facility worked with the 1-214th General Support Aviation Battalion and 525th Military Working Dog Detachment to acclimate three military working dogs to helicopter flight during a training exercise Sept. 29 at Clay Kaserne.

Military working dogs play a vital role supporting the U.S. military in patrolling, searching for weapons and explosives, drug detection, and policing work on installations and in deployed locations where modes common carriers are not always obvious. In the event that an MWD and their handler are in medical distress and require medical evacuation, or need to get to a location quickly, sometimes a helicopter is the best option.

“Helicopter flying can be a stressful situation for dogs,” said Captain Sarah Laws, manager of the Veterinary Treatment Center in Wiesbaden. “Therefore, it is important to familiarize dogs with the helicopter if they have not had the opportunity to fly before the actual event.”

The training gave handlers and their dogs a chance to undergo hands-on training designed to prepare them both, should a medical evacuation be required.

“We started by getting the MWDs used to being inside the helicopter with nothing turned on,” the master sergeant said. Cory Wolfle, NCO in charge of plans and operations for the 525th Military Police Detachment. “Then we progressed to being in the running helicopter, then we progressed to loading and a familiarization flight so the dogs could get used to all the sensory dynamics that a running helicopter brings.”

As part of the training orientation process, the dogs were led by their handlers to the flight line and practiced getting in and out of the helicopter while the rotors were spinning.

“This training is very valuable,” said Military Working Dog Handler Pfc. David Beadle. “My dog ​​has flown many times and was super cool, but he didn’t, so it was a great opportunity to gain more experience and prepare better.”

Now that the dust has settled and the after-action reports are complete, Rheinland Pfalz Public Health Activity staff and MWD teams found the training valuable.

“We hope to host more training events like this in the future,” Laws said. “Ideally, this turns into a quarterly event where we teach helicopter familiarization and tactical combat casualty care together.”

Date taken: 10.11.2022
Date posted: 10.11.2022 09:00
Story ID: 431053

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Bette C. Alvarado