Providing unmatched security one sniff at a time

  • Published
  • By By Senior Airman Mariette Adams
  • 6th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

Airman Jecky serves on various missions around the world, providing security to both Airmen and leaders. Due to his versatility and training, he is capable of filling a variety of roles no matter the mission.

These roles have included, bomb detection for presidential security, assisting more than 30 rescue teams in support of a post-earthquake mission in India, and sweeping 210 sq. miles of a large sensor field overseas, securing $10 billion worth of assets with zero breaches.

At first glance, Jecky is clearly different from most. At only seven years old, he stands about three feet tall with hair covering his entire body. However, his keen sense of smell and invaluable skills more than overshadow his obvious physical differences.

Military working dogs like Jecky play a key role in the success of worldwide operations and national defense.

“Our dogs provide a level of security that no machine or man can match,” explained Staff Sgt. Josh Burnett, a military working dog trainer assigned to the 6th Security Forces Squadron. “Their odor detection is extremely valuable because no matter what ‘terrorists’ try to do to cover the scent of a bomb or explosive, our dogs will still be able to smell the odor through their ability of separating scents.”

From the early morning hours to late in the evening, these four-legged Airmen are hard at work sniffing for threats.

“We provide a psychological deterrent as well as provide explosive and drug detection on base,” said Burnett.

Throughout the day, they will alternate patrolling the base, searching vehicles, and training.

Training consists of scenarios ranging from the dog detaining a suspect to finding an explosive in a building. The purpose is to help the dogs and handlers maintain optimum readiness for every potential situation.

To keep the dogs healthy and mission ready, their handlers, work around the clock to ensure the kennels are clean, the dogs are fed and prepared for each shift.

Although the days can be long, the handlers know the dogs are critical to the safety of the base and its personnel. As a result, maintaining an unbreakable bond between the two guarantees they remain among the most formidable Airmen in world.

“It’s true what they say, a dog is a man’s best friend,” said Senior Airman Brian Loughmiller, a military working dog handler assigned to the 6th SFS. “I’ve only been working with Jecky for five months now and we click very well together. Having a good bond with him makes work a whole lot easier.”