Do Police Dogs Get Paid?

Unconditionally loyal, police dogs often work long hours to protect, patrol, and serve the community. Trained by dedicated officers throughout the UK, our highly intelligent dogs assist with many policing duties such as conducting searches, locating missing persons, assisting in arresting offenders, and supporting officers throughout their investigations.

So, you might wonder, are our hardworking canines fairly paid for their all-important policing duties?

Although dedicated and extremely hardworking, police dogs are not paid the same way as their fellow human partners. 

The good news is that, like most working dogs, police dogs see their work as a game and as something they enjoy doing. Just like any other house pet, the best reward in a dog’s world is endless amounts of playtime, copious amounts of love, and delicious snacks.

Devoted to their duties, read on to discover the benefits UK police dogs and their handlers receive.

Black and white police dog in yellow harness

Do Police Dogs Get Paid?

Whilst dog handlers take home their salary each month, police dogs do not get paid – at least not in the same way. Much like patrol cars and safety equipment, police dogs are an important asset to keeping the public safe but as such, they are regarded as property and not personnel. 

Just like your furry friend at home, police dogs are rewarded with playtime, tasty treats, and unlimited love and adoration. Not only are our loyal canines showered with off-duty affection, but the police departments themselves cover their medical, training, and diet expenses. 

Do Police Dog Handlers Get Additional Pay? 

After a police officer has successfully been appointed as a dog handler, their annual salary will remain the same. However, officers are entitled to a dog handlers’ allowance of £2,387 per annum, payable monthly alongside their usual salary.

If an officer is in the care of more than one police dog, their dog handlers’ allowance increases to an extra 25% per additional dog.

During periods of annual leave and maternity/adoption leave, officers will continue to receive the dog handlers’ allowance. If an officer is on a period of sick leave, annual leave or maternity/adoption leave for a period longer than one month, payments may cease if they are no longer caring for the police dog during this time.

Each case is treated individually, depending on the dog handler’s situation.

How Much Do Police Dog Handlers Get Paid In The Uk?

Police dog handlers will continue to receive their usual annual salary in addition to the dog handlers’ allowance of £2,387 per annum. 

The starting salary for all police officers is dependent on demographics, however, dog handlers in the UK can expect to receive a starting salary of £28,726 per annum. To progress to a dog handling position, every police recruit has to have completed at least 2 years of service on the front line. 

Becoming a dog handler is more complex than applying for the role. Police officers must complete an initial trial course with a qualified police dog and after that, wait for an open dog handling vacancy. 

A highly sought-after policing position, to secure your new position as a dog handler, it is advantageous to have previous experience with handling working canines.

Do Uk Police Dogs Live With Their Handlers?

The short answer: Yes! Police dogs do live with their fellow human handlers. 

Whilst it is a police officer’s duty to train their canines to a high policing standard, it is also their responsibility to provide their specialist dog with care and a loving home. 

Police dogs are loved and cared for just like any other house pet. The dog handler must provide their dog with care and ensure it is kept in excellent physical form. Unlike regular pets, the police dog will begin and end its working day alongside its trusted dog handler. 

Just like humans, police dogs will reach a certain age where they will retire (usually at 9 years old) and hang up their K9 duties. Retired police dogs will continue living a happy and fulfilling life, often remaining in the care of their dog handler. 

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