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1st Military Working Dog Regiment

The 1st Military Working Dog Regiment’s mission is to deliver Military Working Dog and Veterinary capability in support of Field Army outputs.


 A Military Working Dog with its handler on the range

Delivering a wide range of Military Working Dog capabilities, the Regiment plays a pivotal role in supporting a number of key activities including; counter insurgency operations, the detection of Improvised Explosive Devices, assistance in the searching of routes, buildings and vehicles, enhancing security and patrolling key installations.

The military effects the Regiment provides in support of operations range from that of deterrence and detection, right through to the use of sub-lethal force.

The 1st Military Working Dog Regiment consists of three Regular and two Reserve Military Working Dog Squadrons, comprising 299 Regular soldiers and officers [A Military Working Dog with its handler on the range] with the ability to surge to a maximum capacity of 384 Military Working Dogs.

The recent creation of a Reserve component also provides an exciting opportunity to generate, train and fully integrate an additional 350 Army Reservists into the Regiment.  Reserve roles include Dog Handlers, Veterinary Nurses and Veterinary Officers.

Continuing to support operations both at home and abroad, the Regiment is on track to meet its rebasing commitments, consolidating within St. George’s Barracks, North Luffenham by late 2017.  Until then, the Unit will continue to operate from bases in Sennelager, Germany, North Luffenham and Cyprus.


Military Working Dogs and Handlers have a long and proud history within the British Army, serving in every major conflict since World War 1.  More recently, the Regiment has deployed Military Working Dog teams, Veterinary Officers and Veterinary Technicians (now referred to as Veterinary Nurses) as part of the following Operations: 

  • Northern Ireland         1969 - 2007
  • Bosnia                        1995 - 2005
  • Kosovo                       1999 - 2003
  • Iraq                             2003 - 2009
  • Afghanistan                2003 - On-going

The 1st Military Working Dog Regiment also provides support to the wider Defence overseas engagement and capacity building remit through the provision of short term training teams, mentors, specialist advisors and exchange programmes.  Recent and upcoming deployments include, but are not limited to the following countries:

  • Australia
  • Bahrain
  • Columbia.
  • Denmark
  • Holland
  • Kenya
  • Jordan
  • Pakistan 

Military handlers and their working dogs form a uniquely strong and close relationship both in barracks and when deployed.

Veterinary Officers and Veterinary Nurses also regularly deploy on overseas training exercises and on operations, where they are tasked to maintain the health of the Military Working Dog fleet.  

Regimental motto: Vires in Varietate - Strength in Diversity

Protection military working dog

Primarily a Force Protection asset, Protection dogs provide commanders with a high profile visual deterrent that has the ability to detect, chase and hold an intruder with sub lethal aggression.  This asset can also be employed in the following scenarios: a static or patrolling sentry, within an ambush, crowd control or as an escort for detainees.

Vehicle search military working dog

Provides a high profile and compact versatile aid to searching all types of vehicle platforms for the presence of weapons, explosives and ammunition. Furthermore, it can search motorbikes, cars, lorries, aircraft, ships or containers.  It is primarily used at main entry points to installations, barracks or vehicle check points. 

Arms explosive search dog

Provides the commander with an additional level of assurance during the conduct of routine patrols or area searches.  This asset searches ahead of the Infantry patrol and can be used to investigate routes and compounds. It looks for the presence of weapons, explosives, ammunition and pressure plates.     

Improvised explosive device detection dog

Provides the commander with a relatively long distance stand off IED detection capability, providing an additional level of assurance. It searches ahead of the Infantry patrol, allowing for improved freedom of movement in increased threat environments. It looks for the presence of explosives and pressure plates.

High assurance search dog

Operates within an Advance Search Team, providing a stand off detect capability. A slow and systematic capability proving a high level of assurance. It searches for the presence of explosives and pressure plates.

Patrol and explosive detection dog

Offers the commander a united protect and detect capability in one Military Working Dog. Highly trained and skilled, it provides a combined immediate visual deterrent and the capacity to detect, chase and hold an adversary with sub lethal aggression. In addition, it can also search for the presence of weapons, explosives ammunition and pressure plates.

Drugs detection dog

Drugs Detection Dogs will detect all classifications of illegal drugs (A to C) in a multitude of environments and search targets including areas, equipment, vehicles and people. They can be used in deliberate counter-narcotics searches or as a deterrent.

Infantry patrol dog

Infantry Patrol Dogs provide a silent indication of approaching personnel through scent and sound. Their primarily use is within an infantry patrol, where they can also be tasked as an early warning system.

Police dog multi-purpose

The Police Dog Multi Purpose has the same capabilities as a Protection Dog, but in additional is able to track and conduct article searches for out of context scents.

Tracker dog

Tracker Dogs are capable of tracking personnel over varying terrain by day and night. The Tracker dog will also detect and indicate to the handler the presence of items discarded whilst on task.

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