Two Fairfax County police officers and their K-9 partners participated in an Iron Dog competition on May 21. The event was coordinated by the Virginia Police Canine Association and took place at Great Meadow Field Events Center in The Plains.
Twenty-eight officers and their dogs from West Virginia, Maryland and Virginia competed in a 10-event course covering 1.25 miles.
The competition included Search, Narcotic or Explosive Find, Lift (K-9 clears a fence), Gun Battle with Cover/Concealment, Muzzle Work, Agility, Distracter Area, Apprehension, Vehicle Narcotic/Explosive Find, Finish (Dog runs to specified area and is commanded to sit).
Master Police Officer Mark Dale with K-9 Niko and Private First Class Mike Gubesch with K-9 Justice both competed to represent Fairfax County Police.
PFC Gubesch and Justice placed first in the Narcotic Detection and Muzzle Work courses. They placed second in the Gun Battle and Apprehension courses. They also came in first place for the overall competition and Justice was named Iron Dog. PFC Gubesch completed the entire 1.25 mile course in 8 minutes and 57 seconds. The average time was over 14 minutes.