History of the USPCA


The United States Police Canine Association (USPCA) is the Nation’s Oldest and Largest Police K-9 Organization. Since 1971, we have been training and certifying police dogs in General Patrol Dog use, Tracking, Protection, Narcotic Detection, Explosive Detection, Arson, Fish and Game, and Search and Rescue. These regional and national certifications have been upheld by more than 78 U.S. Supreme and Federal District Court rulings as a ‘Bona-Fide’ test for Police use. We are the Police Dog Teams Protecting America. We represent the very finest in Police Dog Training and Certification and strive for constant improvement.

The Police Dogs that you see in Airports, Train Stations, Police Cruisers, and so on are probably dogs that have been trained and certified by the USPCA. We have a wide diversity of breeds to include the German Shepherd Dog, Belgian Malinois, Retrievers, Labradors, Border Collies, Bloodhounds, and so on.

The United States is broken down into various ‘Regions’ that participate and hold field trials each year. Those teams receiving top scores are invited to attend the National Police Dog Field Trials, where the National Champion is selected. 

We also host many training seminars across the USA with our National Trainers. These trainers represent the very finest in Police Dog Training, with most having decades of experience in training and evaluating dogs. Many of our trainers have military backgrounds that further complement their value towards police dog training. We also assist as subject matter experts for various research Universities and organizations looking into K-9’s to help detect cancer, diabetes, even stolen historical artifacts being smuggled from the mid-east.

We would love for you to learn more about Police K-9’s by visiting one of your local Police Dog events, or public demonstrations, or even request a ride-along with your local Police Dog Handler by calling your local Police Department.

We also have various levels of members ranging from the Police Dog Teams, Search and Rescue, and General Supporters. We welcome all of your donations into our 501:C-3 Non-Profit Organization, and I look forward to meeting you at one of our events one day.

For more information, contact Don Slavik, Executive Director at [email protected], or by phone at (651) 350-4541.



During a Police K-9 Competition held in May of 1964 in Jacksonville Beach, Florida,  and being sponsored by that City and their Police Department,  the idea of forming an organization for the betterment of Florida Police K-9 Units was conceived. 

A meeting was held in Sanford, FL on 6-25-1965 and was attended by 18 officers and officials from 9 departments throughout the state.  Temporary officers of the Association were named until such time as an election could be held:  a charter was adopted to be presented to the Secretary of State for approval.  

The Florida Police K-9 Association was incorporated by the Secretary of State, Tom Adams,  in Tallahassee, Florida on 10-7-1965.  The "FIRST ANNUAL FLORIDA POLICE K-9 SEMINAR" was held on October 15th through the 27th,  1966 in Tampa.  There were 75 LE Personnel from 26 departments including 4 from out of state,  in attendance.  

At the General Membership meeting held during the 2nd Annual Police K-9 Seminar,  in Orlando on 10-24 to 26th, 1967,  an Association name change was discussed.  Representatives from 9 out-of-state Departments voiced their desire to join this Association but were reluctant to do so because of the name "Florida".   

A charter change was approved on 8-7-1968 and the Association officially became POLICE K-9 ASSOCIATION, INC.   A few years later,  the NE Section of the United States established the United States K-9 Association.    It didn't take long before the members of these two fine organizations realized that strength was in unity and that their basic goals and objections were the same and the present United States Police Canine Association was formed.     This joining occurred in 1971 and has been going strong ever since.    

We are proud of our 50 year legacy and strive to continue the original ideas of our founders!