Five Times Bitten, None of Them Shy
Many people watched two weeks ago to see me get my comeuppance and get bit by three different K9’s during training by HRD K9 (High Risk Deployment Police K9). HRD Police K9 is a network of experienced professionals in the highly specialized field. From K9 trainers to decoys to handlers, all with a vast well of knowledge to draw from to increase the capability of the unique and ancient partnership between man and his best friend.
So what was it like getting bit? Well to ensure that we’re all clear, I had a bite suit on, so the sensory perception might be a little off as it wasn’t teeth on the skin or thin flimsy clothing. Everything I felt was through a thick padded, stiff suit.
The first two bites, made by a Belgian Malinois on my left forearm and my right tricep were not as painful as I thought they’d be. However, they were still extremely forceful. Imagine if you will, two sledgehammers with precision timing coming together on your limb with enough force to almost break the bone. I don’t know how close he was to breaking my bone clean in half, but it sure as hell felt like he was close. What shocked me the most though, was the dog’s control once he had me in his jaws. He twisted, turned, yanked, and pulled, never letting up on the pressure of the bite. It was sunk in and he was in for the long haul.
^That is not me, that’s one of the other decoys putting in work. It’s a painful job, but someone’s gotta do it.
The third bite was run by a former Belgian police officer and his 11-year-old Belgian Malinois, yes, you read that right. The dog that took me down at the knee is 11 years old. And she still hits like a freight train. There were a few interesting things that took place during this bite. Number one, she hit me right at the knee bend and I learned from watching the video, that I am a very shitty and awkward faller. She hit right where all my weight was and down I went, even through the bite suit. The next interesting facet of this takedown was when she was barking in my ear. I don’t know if any of you have had an animal that could literally rip your throat out, let you know she isn’t pleased with you while a mere two inches from your face. It is a humbling experience, but also, very calming. What the f***? Calming? I’ll tell you as someone who felt this (11 year old) dog hit, bite and tackle…hearing the confidence in the handler’s voice and seeing their relationship…the bond between handler and K9, I was not even close to being worried (I probably should have been, if I were a smarter man, but I wasn’t). Two weeks later, the mark from the takedown is still visible.
Finally, came the time when I was yanked out of the car. First off, the other three bites, I heard the dog barking. I was prepared for the bite. This German Shepherd was a friggin’ ninja, coming up on me with no warning. I was watching the rearview mirror the entire time, never even saw the pooch till he’d secured my leg in his mouth. I had a bruise for three days. After being ripped out of the car by the tenacious K9, they did a bite on my left tricep/shoulder. Even through the thick suit, I was in immediate pain, stabbing like a knife. You hear me in the video say “Hey man I thought we were all friends here,” because that bite flucking hurt.
Those were the bites. Now for the lessons learned.
1. If you’re going to run from the police, ensure you’re not running from a K9 unit. It will hurt.
2. Those guys in the bite suits are tough mofos. It’s usually hot and you’re getting bit and hit by dogs all damn day, it takes a toll.
3. Getting bit, even if you don’t run, is zeerrroooo fun. Shit hurts, and I had a bite suit on.