Established in 2014, the K9 Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (K9 TECC) Initiative working group was developed under the auspice of the Committee for Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (www.c-tecc.org) with the intent of developing best practice prehospital care guidelines for Operational K9s injured in the Line of Duty. The K9-TECC working group extracts available evidence-based medicine, lessons learned from MWD combat casualties, and end-user experience from the front line to develop best practice recommendations for out-of-hospital care for the injured Operational K9 (OpK9). K9-TECC principles focus on interventions that eliminate the major preventable causes of death and that are affordable, sustainable, and require minimal training and resources. Similar to human TECC guidelines (available at c-tecc.org), K9 TECC principles are incorporated into three dynamic phases of care: Direct Threat Care (DTC)/Hot Zone, Indirect Threat Care (ITC)/Warm Zone, and Evacuation (EVAC)/ Cold Zone.

Fundamentally, the goals and principles for each phase of care will remain relatively same as human TECC; however, modifications are made to account for K9-related anatomical and physiological uniqueness’. K9-TECC principles will remain flexible, not rigid; thus, allowing the provider to adapt to any particular operational task or situational threat risk based each organization's unique operational doctrine. Since they are modeled off human-based TECC, K9 TECC should be easily learned and applied by various first responders.

K9 TECC principles are written by civilians to be utilized by civilian EMS, TEMS, and Operational K9 Handlers. The K9 TECC working group consists of a diversified group of leaders comprised of physicians, veterinarians, EMS personnel, military and civilian tactical medics, law enforcement officers, K9 Handlers (LE and SAR), and fire fighters.

The K9 TECC working group uses evidence-based medicine to form the foundation of their K9 TECC principles, however, the working group also relies heavily on end-user input and representatives from the front line to mold their final recommendations; therefore, we invite readers of this page to share their personal stories, experiences and ideas.

To learn more about he Committee of Tactical Emergency Casualty Care and access their TECC principles go to www.c-tecc.org