K9 TECC FAQ:
Many people have asked, "How do I become a Certified K9 TECC instructor?" or "What permission do I need to use the K9 TECC Guidelines and or resources provided on the K9 TECC webpage?"
The resources developed by the K9 TECC working falls under the purview of the Committee of TECC (C-TECC), therefore, those that want to use the K9 TECC resources and cite K9 TECC on their website will need to follow the same guidelines C-TECC has provided for using the human TECC guidelines and resources. Those guidelines are found on the C-TECC website at the following link:
"How can I get certified in K9 TECC?"
The K9 TECC guidelines are open source and non-proprietary. There are currently no “official K9 TECC courses” or K9 TECC provider/instructor certifications.
C-TECC and K9 TECC working group believes that, though there are universal “principles” of high threat response, the application must be tailored for individual agencies based upon local resources, political climate, budget and operational experience. “Cookie cutter” or standardized courses and applications for high threat operations fail to account for the differences among first responders that vary widely jurisdiction to jurisdiction, region to region, state to state, etc. As such, the concepts and skills in these classes have to be ‘un-learned’ or ‘ignored’ because they do not fit into the specific agency SOP or scope.
K9 TECC is not dogma, and the principles are meant to be applied uniquely by each agency that uses it, depending on that agency's provider levels, scope of practice, culture, patient population, risk assessment, etc. We consider the K9 TECC guidelines to be a pile of bricks; take only the bricks that fit into your operational culture and build a response program that is unique to you. Just don’t change the individual bricks. Similar to TECC, the principles of K9 TECC are not difficult to teach as the actual MARCH interventions such as pressure dressings, needle decompression, etc. are similar to those skills already learned for managing human casualties. The uniqueness of K9 TECC is taking the skills and knowledge medical providers already have for treating human casualties and knowing how and when to apply them to a K9 casualty. In most regards this comes down to understanding the species differences in anatomy and physiology.
If you cannot develop your own training, there are training entities that offer K9 TECC courses which some of them have been listed on the K9 TECC website under LINKS. Similar to C-TECC, in the future, those companies and institutions that meet the principles of K9 TECC guidelines instruction as set forth by the Committee may display a special C-TECC logo and be listed on the C-TECC.org website; until then, if you take a K9 TECC class, make sure you check into the background and experience of the instructors first, and make sure that they are not teaching you Canine - TCCC and calling it K9 TECC.
"What if my department or agency needs help developing or implementig a K9 TECC program?"
The K9 TECC working group is committed to assisting all agencies and first responders who wish to utilize the K9 TECC guidelines. We have, and are working on, a variety of resources to assist you. Currently, we can provide a variety of educational articles and advice on how to get started. Feel free to CONTACT the Working Group with any questions or request for assistance.
"Is there a standard slide deck or training platform I may use for starting my agencies K9 TECC program?"
Similar to TCCC, a standardized K9 TECC slide deck is in the works for organizations to use to develop their agencies K9 TECC program. This is to ensure that while the principles are adapted to the agency's scope, at least the basic intent of K9 TECC are kept intact/genuine. The goal hope is to have the slide deck available on the website by early 2016.
"What additional considerations should agencies take into account when developing an K9 TECC program?"
In order to ensure no legal reprisal from State Regulatory Agencies that govern the practice of veterinary medicine, than each organization's training program should be developed in collaboration or partnership with a veterinarian that is licensed in the state or region where the agency conducts the training. The K9 TECC working group provides the following linked DISCLAIMER on their website. In short, any K9 related medical training should be provided under the direction of a licensed veterinary professional or a professional training organization that employs or incorporates a licensed veterinarian on their staff or as a their veterinary medical director to oversee their K9 training curriculum. Again, this stipulation is to ensure that the appropriate medical training is being provided and to mitigate any potential legal reprisal State Veterinary Regulatory Agencies that govern the practice of veterinary medicine may have with non-licensed veterinary personnel or organizations providing such training. Agencies that do not have veterinary personnel currently on their staff, should consider partnering with local / regional licensed veterinary personnel that are versed in K9 emergency and prehospital care, that will support and review the K9 medical portion of the agencies training program, and that may provide some of the course instruction.
"What topics should I include in my K9 TECC program?"
The training topics recommended by the K9 TECC working group are found in the White paper entitled "Operational K9 Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (K9-TECC) Training and K9 Individual First Aid Kits (K9-IFAK) WhitePaper"
One thing we highly advocate, is that the K9 TECC course of instruction also include a review of basic K9 Anatomy and Physiology so that First Responders know how to appropriately apply the procedures and interventions on a K9 casualty. Most EMS providers already know the basic first aid skills, they just need to know how to apply them to the K9 based upon the different anatomical landmarks and differences in physiology for the K9. Many K9 Handlers recieve little to no training in K9 anatomy, physiology or first aid and, therefore, require a more in-depth discussion of these topics. As a result, the depth of training provided needs to be tailored for each individual audience.