Braveheart Bio-Dog Academy has been the distinctive leader in the dog
training and development field in South Africa since 1987, with
services rendered varying from the training of dogs
for personal protection, dog training and selling, as well as the
accredited K9 training of dogs and handlers for specialised applications
such as explosives and narcotics detection
as required by governments and the private sector internationally.
Braveheart Bio-Dog Academy
§ Runs a professional training academy for dogs and
handlers (Dog Trainer School – Career Pathing:
How to become a dog trainer).
§ Is a PSIRA (Private Security Industry regulatory
Authority) accredited dog and handler
training center and a PSIRA accredited dog
supplier. Training is presented by Grade A DH5
§ Provides certificates of competence for both dog
§ Is an accredited SASSETA (Safety And Security Sector Education And Training Authority)
training service provider that provides courses for learners that can lead
to national qualifications, with qualified registered Assessors and
§ Offers PSIRA and SASSETA
accredited dog training and dog (K9)
handler courses including:
detection dog training (sniffer dogs)
- Narcotic detection dog training (drug
- Explosive detection dog training (bomb
§ Offers consultation services internationally and
locally to governmental as well as private concerns.
§ Hires out dogs and dog kennels.
§ Does Research on and Development of new techniques
and training aids for narcotics detection
dogs and explosives detection dogs, and
advanced training methods.
§ Develops and utilizes vapour training aids for
training and continuation training of dogs
and handlers for substance detection.
§ Has dogs for sale that are stringently tested for physical suitability, good temperament, and behaviour.
§ Advises and implements programmes for integrating
dogs into families (companion animals – ethology).
§ Offers a kenneling service (Boarding Kennels) for clients’ Dogs.
§ Supplies service dog equipment (dog kennels, dog harnesses,
dog leashes, dog check chains etcetera).
§ Provides a scientific dog behavioural consultancy
through our Academy and Research Institute, a highly
professional service to satisfy our customers’ needs in the most
cost-effective and productive manner; to be
the service provider of choice because of our high quality of service,
performance and commitment to the highest standards of professionalism; to perform as team players that show respect for
colleagues; to develop and maintain
training capacity for:
§ Professional accredited
training of dog handlers to the highest international standards for SASSETA
(Safety And Security Sector Education And Training Authority) and
PSIRA (Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority) accredited
Top class professional consultation services regarding
all aspects of dog and handler matters
§ Specialized accredited
training of handlers and dogs for:
detection (explosives, narcotics etcetera)
§ Research and Development
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Bio-Dog Academy boasts its own research unit and specialized laboratory, headed by owner John
Greyvenstein. He holds a BSc (Zoology) (Hons) and
an MSc in Genetics. His MSc thesis was dedicated
to Working Dogs.
The research unit made a significant breakthrough during the first half of
2005 in the detection of narcotics and explosives using sniffer dogs,
making the process much more accurate while avoiding potentially dangerous
for both Handler and Dog.
The Braveheart Bio-Dog Academy team developed
training aids that contain a small amount of the vapour of a target
substance. Dangerous substances like explosives and narcotics are tamed in
the process because of the techniques applied (which adhere to the
requirements of the Chief Inspector of Explosives as well as those of the
The aids are not dangerous to either trainer or dog, and cannot be
abused by anybody. With proper precautions they can
also easily be protected against contamination, and
can be stored securely.
During trial runs internationally,
resounding success was achieved with both the preparing and testing of
training material, and the training and assessing of dogs and handlers.
The new technique was successfully demonstrated during an Open Day at Braveheart Bio-Dog Academy on 10 June 2005 – using narcotics detection dogs
that had been trained for less than two
Research is done on a continuous basis, and the
next significant breakthrough is to be announced during the second half of
The breakthrough in the application of sniffer dogs has also opened up
significant new career opportunities in specialised dog handling for both
private security firms who want to have their officers trained for
narcotics and explosives detection making use of sniffer dogs, and for
private individuals who want to follow a lucrative career in specialized
dog handling after obtaining their DH5 certification.
The Research Unit has also already successfully patented a unique
kennelling system, scientifically designed, developed and tested to enhance
the comfort of the dog and simplify the task of its minder, while
representing a significant cost saving.
A scientifically balanced self-feeder unit for dogs has also been
successfully developed and tested, and is in full commercial use.
Braveheart Bio-Dog Academy’s research unit
is constantly working on projects relevant to the dog-related security
industry, and more breakthroughs are in the pipeline, like the announcement regarding narcotics and explosives detection
Greyvenstein and Dr. Fanie van der Walt in the Braveheart Bio-Dog
Academy research laboratory
RESEARCH: LATEST DEVELOPMENTS
Because of a higher level of awareness, and
improved technology to detect explosives currently being used at airports
and other entry points, an increasing number of efforts by terrorists to
smuggle explosive devices into a country have recently been foiled.
Terrorists are therefore actively developing alternative explosive
substances that will evade detection. The most prominent class of organic
substances they are currently concentrating on is based on peroxide groups,
which contain no nitrogen atoms and therefore escapes X-ray detection. They
are also metal free - even the detonators contain no metal or lead atoms
that would show up on X-ray devices.
It had therefore become imperative to urgently develop techniques to detect
the new generation of explosives (commonly known as "the Mother of Satan")
now being used by terrorist organisations in homemade devices, because they
cannot be detected by current devices and aids, including X-rays and sniffer
dogs. These explosives have already been used against passenger aircraft
with devastating results. They were also used in the London Underground and
Bus Service as well as other suicide attacks, resulting in many deaths.
A major problem in developing aids to detect peroxide based explosives is
the fact that these substances are chemically unstable, have a short shelf
life, and are thus very dangerous to work with.
After their initial breakthrough in 2005
regarding the training of sniffer dogs and handlers to detect "normal"
explosives, the Braveheart Bio-Dog Academy research team can now announce a
major breakthrough in detecting and identifying "Mother of Satan"
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