Canine Program.

Ken Licklider - January 2022 BLOG



As the world changes, so does our profession. I have been a dog handler/trainer for 45 years now. I have seen changes of all kinds from aggressive response dogs to primarily passive, defense oriented patrol dogs to prey oriented patrol dogs. I wrote a briefing for the U.S. Army on using dual purpose dogs in our Special Forces programs.

Initially I was scoffed at by the U.S. military when I proposed a dual purpose bomb dog that would work with a unit, not just a handler. A dog that was a great bomb dog as well as a social patrol dog able to walk unmuzzled with a team of soldiers who were not worried about this dog biting them as they moved through buildings and battle zones of all types. My vision was to procure smaller, lighter social dogs (Malinois) and train them in a team concept to support special units conducting special operations.

I started with Delta Force and Seal Team Six. Both programs started here at Vohne Liche Kennels but eventually moved on, establishing their own programs. Both units used our methods, and in fact Seal Team six hired my lead instructor, luring him away to run their program for many years.

All of the original Delta trainers were a product of VLK. These are facts we are extremely proud of. One of Delta’s main trainers is my best friend to this day. I’m so proud of this guy.

The Rangers and all of the numbered teams came to us to develop a program for them. We did and later the Marine Special Forces (MARSOC) came on board too. These programs were extremely successful. Through the entire middle east conflict – Iraq and Afghanistan we provided MPC dogs and handler training without losing a single handler in combat. Our dogs performed beyond expectations. Recently the contract was rebid and for reasons unknown, but ultimately expected, we lost the contract. It’s hard to work with such people for so long and then lost that opportunity.

We are the only ones until now to produce and provide this type of dog that was our original idea. We still have the capability to provide those dogs and training to anyone wanting the best of the best. I am amazed that people and programs have not contacted us to date. Email or call, those dogs are still available.

   Ken Licklider.

   SMSgt, USAF (Retired) Owner