Who let the dogs out? It was BPD

Karin Patiño



Ashby demonstrates how powerful Jax’s grip is with the use of a safety armguard in front of CSUB students during the Sept. 22 demonstration at the campus track.
Photo by Scot Swan/ The Runner


  On Sept. 27, CSUB’s criminal justice department hosted a K-9 demonstration from the Bakersfield Police Department for an intro to criminal justice class. Students made their way over to the athletics track at 7:30 a.m. for the demonstration. Sergeant Jared Ashby arrived shortly after with his canine companion, Jax, a Slovakian Shepherd.

  Ashby, who has worked for the BPD for 11 years, shared some fun facts about Jax. Although Jax may look like a standard German Shepherd, he is actually a Slovakian Shepherd, literally from Slovakia. That’s right. Jax has his very own passport. Since Jax was trained in a different country, the commands that Ashby used were in different languages such as Czech, German, and Dutch.

  Starting off the demonstration, Ashby explained how the dogs in the police department’s K9 unit are used as a tool to assist them. Jax is trained to find bombs. To prove it, Jax waited in the K9 police vehicle as Ashby walked down the lawn and buried a gram of ANFO in the dirt, which is mixture of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil.

  With just a click of a button, the doors of the police vehicle opened and Jax jumped out and was on the move. Students observed as Jax sniffed the ground intently. The Slovakian shepherd didn’t even stray. He seemed to know which way to sniff right from the get go.

  Not surprisingly, Jax found it. Once Jax located the ANFO, he lied down and waited for a treat from Ashby.

  Next on the classic K9 demonstration agenda was the bite sleeve. Ashby slipped on an extremely padded bite sleeve onto his arm, and in no time at all, Jax bit onto it and didn’t let go. As Ashby swung Jax around with no problem at all, he said that the dogs in the K9 unit are trained to go for the limbs when needed. The dogs are also trained to not let go.

  “He’s going to stay in the fight, and he’s going stay in to win,” said Ashby as he walked around with Jax dangling from his arm.

  Ashby explained that the K9 unit dogs are not vicious though. Ashby is Jax’s owner, and Jax goes home with him at the end of every day.

  Whenever the time comes for the dogs to retire, said Ashby, the owner has the options of either buying the dog back for $1 or having the dog be put down. However, in the BPD’s history of the K9 unit, all the owners have bought their canine companion back.