This is a program about a unique breed of canine trained to sniff out everything from narcotics to explosives, even pythons in the Everglades National Park. We’ll learn how these dogs qualify to work for law enforcement agencies and others through stringent physical and psychological testing, going behind the scenes at Auburn University’s Canine Detection Center.

We’ll look at the unique science behind these canine’s remarkable sensing capabilities, and include panel discussion on what it takes to be an effective handler.  The program, K-9 Cops: The Art & Science of Sniffing Out Drugs, will also discuss some of the latest legal challenges faced by local law enforcement regarding canine search and seizures.

Key Concepts:

  • Brief history and background to canine use in detection work
  • Learn how canine sensing mechanisms differentiate odors
  • Analyze key points relating to canine and handler training
  • Discuss legal challenges presented relating to canine search and seizure

Originally Aired: July 26, 2012


Mark Robertson

Positive Response Canines Trainer; Retired, Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, TN

Mr. Robertson began work as a patrol and narcotics canine handler, trainer, supervisor and Unit Commander in 1987. He has worked and trained K-9 teams for search warrants, package and freight, airport, mini-storage and highway interdictions. He is also a graduate of the United States Customs Narcotics Detector Dog Technical Trainers School in Front Royal, Virginia, and the FBI National Academy; and works as a U.S.P.C.A. Regional Judge for Patrol and Narcotics dog teams. He has been recognized in State and Federal Courts as an expert in the field of Narcotics Detector Dogs. After 28-years of service with the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, he retired as a Lieutenant and has been an instructor with the MCTFT program for the last 12-years.

Frank Campbell

Beginning his career as a dual purpose handler in the U.S. Army at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina, Mr. Campbell worked as a Handler with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office in Florida for 23-years. Experiences included explosives, patrol and narcotic dogs, as well as SWAT team work, in addition to being a K-9 trainer for a 13-dog unit. Campbell worked eight years in narcotics with a DEA interdiction task force for single purpose drug dogs, and has been a recognized expert and guest speaker at local, national and international training seminars since 1988. Today, he is a level-two trainer, Florida instructor/evaluator, and national detector dog judge. He is also the lead instructor and founder of the K-9 Operations class at MCTFT; and is a recognized author of magazine articles and books on K-9 training and interdiction.