Citizen’s Canine Academy

The Lenoir Police Department hosts a "Citizen's Canine Academy" each year. K-9 Officers from within the department instruct citizens on basic obedience exercises with their pets. This training provides owners a chance to conduct "hands on" training with pets to improve obedience issues.

No aggression or protection training is offered in this course.

There is no cost to attend the training; however, donations to supplement the canine budget are graciously accepted.

Class Details

Classes are traditionally held every Thursday night from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. for 6 weeks with applications available in late August. Time is allowed for a review of what was covered during previous sessions, as well as to introduce new exercises and address individual problems. Training takes place at various locations inside the city. Class size is kept small to provide an appropriate instructor/handler ratio.

Guidelines

  • Applicants must be 16 years of age or older; (participants 16-18 must be accompanied at all times by a parent or guardian.
  • No dogs under 6 months of age will be accepted.
  • Applicants are subject to a background check and must sign a release of liability.
  • No overly aggressive dogs will be accepted for training. No aggression or protection training will be provided.
  • Dogs must have current vaccinations to include distemper, parvo, rabies and kennel cough. Immunization records must be submitted on or before the first class meeting.
  • Canines must be receiving regular flea and tick treatments.
  • Training will require the use of chain slip collars, approved leashes and some type of reward item. Equipment will be discussed during the first training session.

About the Instructors 

All three Officers have attended the required Handler's Course at the Lenoir Police Department with their canine partners, and they routinely conduct ongoing training throughout the year.

  • Zachery Poythress has 10 years of law enforcement experience with 8 years as a canine handler with the Lenoir Police Department. He has attended a handler's course at the police department for his partner and is currently working with canine Axel, a German Shepherd. He is also a Certified Police K9 Team Instructor and Police Canine Trainer.
  • Justin Reid has 9 years of law enforcement experience with 5 years as a canine handler at the Lenoir Police Department. He has attended a handler's course at the police department for his partner and is currently working with canine Mato, a German Shepherd.
  • Nathaneal Blache has 11 years of law enforcement experience with 3 years as a canine handler at the Lenoir Police Department. He has attended a handler's course at the police department for his partner and is currently working with canine Cerik, a German Shepherd.