BS 8517-2:2016 Security dogs – Part 2: Code of practice for the use of detection dogs

BS 8517-2:2016

Security dogs. Code of practice for the use of detection dogs

Status : Current   Published : September 2016



security and detection dogs

What is this standard about?

A detection or sniffer dog uses its senses (usually the sense of smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat or blood. This standard exists to help ensure that the operational use of such dogs is appropriate. 

Who is this standard for?

  • Security dog training and handling services
  • Security dog services providers and services procurers
  • Private security companies deploying such services
  • Individual handlers
  • Local authorities
  • The police and the MoD

Why should you use this standard?

 It gives recommendations for the operational use of a detection dog by a detection dog handler when providing passive and proactive detection services, e.g. drugs, firearms, munitions and explosives.

Also many end-users don’t understand the full range of services that can be provided, so the standard includes recommendations for procuring security dog services to ensure the service fits the end-user’s requirements and risk profile.

NOTE 1: This standard does not apply to the provisions of general purpose dogs covered in Part 1 or dogs and handlers used in search and rescue operations. As well, hunting dogs that search for game and search dogs that search for missing humans are generally not considered detection dogs. However, there is some overlap, as in the case of cadaver dogs, trained to search for human remains.

NOTE 2: If engaged in the training or use of guard dogs, organizations must comply with all applicable legislation including The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 (as amended), The Town Police Clauses Act 1847, The Metropolitan Police Act 1839, the Animals Act 1971, and The Guard Dogs Act 1975, and must supply evidence that training is carried out exclusively by properly qualified personnel by methods which pay proper regard to the welfare of the dog and are related to the production of a healthy, humanely disciplined animal of good general temperament, trained, when working, to do so under the control of a suitably qualified handler and of the provision of proper facilities, and the maintenance at all times of high and humane standards in relation to kennelling, feeding and exercise with regular qualified veterinary inspection. NASDU, SSAIB and NSI inspect under ISO 9001 to BS 8517-1.

What’s changed since the last update?

The standard needed to be brought up to date with changes to BS 7499:2013 Site guarding and mobile patrol services, and to take in new breeds and legislation, e.g. on compulsory microchipping. Changes have been made to the following sections:

3. Terms and Definitions – additional terms

4.2. Insurance – the need for specific reference to security dogs

4.3. Canine records – the requirement for compulsory microchipping – guidance on age of dog

5. Kennelling – the need to identify internal and external kennelling

6. Health and welfare of the dog

7. Equipment and clothing – use of correction collars 

8. Training – the need to identify monthly/quarterly/annual assessment

9. Operational requirements – the need for “safe distance” – the need to be on “safe leash” at all times

10. Transportation – the need for temperature control/monitoring 

Standard NumberBS 8517-2:2016
TitleSecurity dogs. Code of practice for the use of detection dogs
Publication Date30 September 2016
Normative References(Required to achieve compliance to this standard)BS 7499:2013, BS 7858
Informative References(Provided for Information)BS 7960, BS 8517-1, Private Security Industry Act 2001, Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, Microchipping of Dogs Regulations 2014, Animal Welfare Act 2006, Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006, 2003/88/EC, Control of Dogs Order 1992, Road Traffic Act 1988, Misuse of Drugs Act 1971, Misuse of Drugs and Misuse of Drugs (Safe Custody) (Amendment) (England, Wales and Scotland) Regulations 2014, Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001, Firearms (Amendment) Act 1997, Explosives Regulations 2014, Control of Explosives Regulations 1991, Pyrotechnic (Safety) Regulations 2015, Welfare of Animals (Transport) Order 2006, Sale of Goods Act 1979, Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974
ReplacesBS 8517-2:2010
Draft Superseded By16/30331799 DC
DescriptorsSecurity, Dogs, Working animals, Security personnel, Anti-burglar measures, Records (documents), Training, Animal welfare, Occupational safety, Protective clothing, Transportation, Animal housing facilities
ISBN978 0 580 92028 8
File Size1.426 MB

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