AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - K-9 units from across the country converge in Amarillo this week for a training conference.
The National Narcotic Detector Dog Association is holding its annual training conference where departments join together to sharpen the skills of their k-9 partners.
"We've got to keep finding new ways to challenge the dogs," said Cody Lavery, of the Amarillo Police Department K-9 Unit. "Because the bad guys are trying to find new ways to hide [drugs] from us, and sneak it past us, and cover the smell up."
Throughout the week, the dogs will go through search and seizure training for drugs found on the streets.
One of the reasons handlers travel to this conference is for the unique training opportunities it holds.
"Here today, we're gonna be training on airplanes," said John Derocech, out of Louisiana from St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Office. "That's something I've never been able to do back at our agency."
One of the unique training stations at this years conference is the airplane training session.
"This training offers a lot of variable environments that some of us don't have access to," said Gabriel Gurra of Harker Heights Police Department. "So it's really important for us to come out. It;s a great opportunity to network and kinda build a re pore with people from all over the country."
The conference will continue throughout the week.
This Friday, there is a narcotic search competition among the different K-9s participating in the conference.
It is open to the public and held at the Netplex complex on Hillside Rd.