American Kennel Club Announces Winners Of 1st AKC/USPCA K9 Detection Dog Challenge

Published: Nov. 30, 2021 at 10:00 AM AKST

NEW YORK, Nov. 30, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Kennel Club (AKC®), the world's largest purebred dog registry and leading advocate for all dogs, is excited to announce the winners of the first-ever AKC/USPCA K9 Detection Dog Challenge. The event, hosted by the AKC and the United States Police Canine Association, brought out the best of the nation's narcotics and explosives detection dogs to demonstrate the important role dogs play in law enforcement and keeping our country safe. ESPN2 aired the event on November 28th.

A participant in the AKC/USPCA K9 Detection Dog Challenge
A participant in the AKC/USPCA K9 Detection Dog Challenge

"The AKC is proud to profile the great service that our K9 officers provide to our nation to help keep us safe," said Chris Sweetwood, AKC Board Director. "As the Event Chairman for the Challenge, this was a labor of love for our four-footed first responders and their human partners. We are proud to recognize their professionalism. "

The event was held on November 15th at the PNC Arena, where ten narcotics dog teams and ten explosives detection dog teams competed against each other to see which could find their respective substance – illegal narcotics and explosive substances – the quickest. The teams navigated obstacles and sorted through distractions to find the hidden items. They were scored on the accuracy of their search, perfection of their alert (telling the handler where the hide is), and the find itself (a combination of the ability of the dog and the handler to accurately tell judges where the hide is located).

"This event brought out the best of the best from around the country, and it was extremely impressive to watch these dogs in action," said Gina DiNardo, AKC Executive Secretary. "We are happy to congratulate the winners and all of the participants and thank them for their diligent work in keeping our nation safe."


Explosives Teams:
1st -   Michelle Lyman and K9 Peppers, Raleigh Police Department
2nd-   Tracy Stuart and K9 Freya, Stockton University Police in New Jersey 
3rd-    Kaitlyn Schamberger and K9 Zada, NYPD Transit  
4th -   Alison Gentile and K9 Mac, MTA PD NY
5th -   Rich Rodden & K9 Kasey, GMC Security Global Police

Narcotics Teams:
1st -  Dao Meunseveng & K9 Bero, Des Moines Iowa Police
2nd-  Joe Angarone & K9 Bela, Mercer County, NJ Prosecutors Office
3rd-   Larry McArdle & K9 Zoey, New York Department of Corrections
4th-   Kolby Kraft & K9 Kye, Charleston, IL Police Department
5th-   Jared Davis & K9 Bella, Lowndes County, GA Sheriffs Department

Photos from the event can be downloaded HERE.

To learn more about AKC events, visit To learn more about the USPCA, visit

About the American Kennel Club
Founded in 1884, the American Kennel Club is a not-for-profit organization which maintains the largest registry of purebred dogs in the world and oversees the sport of purebred dogs in the United States. The AKC is dedicated to upholding the integrity of its registry, promoting the sport of purebred dogs and breeding for type and function.  Along with its more than 5,000 licensed and member clubs and its affiliated organizations, the AKC advocates for the purebred dog as a family companion, advances canine health and well-being, works to protect the rights of all dog owners and promotes responsible dog ownership. More than 22,000 competitions for AKC-registered purebred and mixed breed dogs are held under AKC rules and regulations each year including conformation, agility, obedience, rally, tracking, herding, lure coursing, coonhound events, hunt tests, field and earthdog tests.

Affiliate AKC organizations include the AKC Humane Fund, AKC Canine Health Foundation, AKC Reunite and the AKC Museum of the Dog.  For more information, visit

AKC, American Kennel Club, the American Kennel Club seal and design, and all associated marks and logos are trademarks, registered trademarks and service marks of The American Kennel Club, Inc.

Become a fan of the American Kennel Club on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AKCDogLovers.

About the United States Police Canine Association
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. For more information, visit our website at

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SOURCE American Kennel Club

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