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Matt Boster

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Posted by: Matt Boster
Date: Mar 28 2018 9:08 PM

BOYNTON BEACH, Fla -- Holmes County Sheriff’s Deputy Wade Strickland and his K-9 partner, Lasso, took home first and second place bragging rights at the 2018 South Florida K9 Competition, held Saturday, March 24, at Boynton Beach High School in Boynton Beach.

Now in its seventh year, the event was hosted by Boynton Beach Police Department and saw nearly 40 K9 teams from law enforcement agencies around the state.

Holmes County Sheriff’s Office was the only Panhandle agency to compete and held its own against larger agencies such as City of Miami Police Department, taking home first place for fastest dog and second place for hardest hitting.

Deputy Strickland explains the competition’s obstacle course was a reflection of real-life scenarios that K9s and their handlers may encounter in the line of duty.

“This wasn’t a fancy agility course,” he said. “The obstacles simulated situations we run into while working, and they also tested both the dog’s and handler’s ability to adapt and problem solve by adding a twist or extra step, such as a tunnel or water running through the obstacle.”

Deputy Strickland has served the Holmes County Sheriff’s Office for six years and has been handling and training Lasso for two years. Lasso was initially received and trained through Hamilton K-9 Training Center.

This was both officers’ first competition, and while they brought home a first-place trophy, Strickland says he also brought home some valuable new knowledge.

“I met several other trainers while at the competition, and we were able to exchange training techniques,” he said. “I learned a few new tricks that will go beyond performing in competitions and ultimately translate to better training and performance in the field.”

PHOTO: Holmes County Sheriff’s Deputy Wade Strickland and K9 partner Lasso pose with the 2018 South Florida K9 Competition first-place trophy for fastest dog


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