The American Kennel Club Detection Dog Task Force is pleased to announce the appointment of Stacey West as Manager and Subject Matter Expert to lead Phase II of the AKC Patriotic Puppy Pilot Program.
The Patriotic Puppy Program is a pilot program designed to study how American breeders can provide a suitable and reliable source of future explosives detection dogs for advanced training and deployment by law enforcement or government agencies.
Mr. West will oversee a new phase of program development that will broaden training and outreach to include the development of detection dogs that could be deployable at the federal, state or local levels, and in a broader spectrum of jobs and working environments. The new phase will also look to provide a more structured and personalized approach that may include development of limited in-person, hands-on training sessions.
“We are extremely pleased to welcome Stacey to the team and to enter into a new phase of the Patriotic Puppy Program,” said Sheila Goffe, AKC Vice President, Government Relations. “The new program will provide more opportunities for AKC dogs and their trainers, while also incorporating elements of more traditional dog training that AKC breeders and handlers are already familiar with.”
Mr. West also is also founder and president of Anchored Canine, Inc., responsible for all aspects of the development and operation of canine breeding and training programs to produce detection and sporting dogs. Previously, he held several roles with K2 Solutions including serving as a Field Service Representative deployed to Camp Leatherneck, Helmond Province, Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. He is also an AKC Licensed Retriever Field Trial Judge and a Key Opinion Leader with Eucapnia Dog Food. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Fisheries and Wildlife Science from North Carolina State University and a Master of Science in Zoology from Clemson University.
The AKC Detection Dog Task Force (DDTF) has been working since 2016 to study specific areas to help the nation address the crisis of a shortage of high-quality explosives detection dogs for U.S. national and public security. Currently, the United States imports approximately 85-90% of the explosives detection dogs used to protect U.S. public and national security.
Through the DDTF, the AKC has leveraged its role as the leading U.S. canine organization to bring together expert breeders, trainers, researchers/scientists, purchasers, government officials, private buyers and others to collaboratively address the obstacles that prevent the U.S. from being able to produce the detection dogs the country needs.