K9 Team

Game Warden walking with K9

The Maine Warden Service K9 team travels throughout Maine and across the state’s borders to bring missing persons to safety and to protect our natural resources through evidence collection. The specialized team is made up of seven dedicated game wardens and their K9s which are trained in the following areas:

  • Tracking — Following the trail of a person by using that person's individual scent
  • Evidence — Location of items containing human scent, gun powder residue, or any other trained scent that may be used to solve a fish and game case
  • Hasty air scent search — Using the air/wind to follow human scent and locate injured and lost people along natural barriers such as trails, wood lines, ditches, streams, and roads
  • Human Remains — Detecting human remains when a search has been ongoing for a period of time at which the person is probably deceased

Meet the Team

Handlers work side by side with their trusted K9s. When the K9s are not working, you can find them doing normal dog things, like chasing balls, swimming, or looking for treats. K9s live in their handler’s homes and are part of their family, even after they retire.

K9 Corporal Lucas Bellanceau and K9 Breezy

Fryeburg district
Warden since 2012, K9 Handler since 2016

Breezy will do anything for a ball (or anything she can retrieve) and would run all day long if Lucas let her. Read more

Warden Paul Farrington and K9 Yaro

Springfield district
Warden since 1997, K9 Handler since 2004

K9 Yaro is a very playful and eager to please German shepherd. Read more

Landowner Relations Corporal Dave Chabot and K9 Ruby

Warden since 1997, K9 Handler since 2010

K9 Ruby is a carefree black Labrador retriever who always wants to have fun. Read more

Warden Alan Curtis and K9 Sig

Aurora district
Warden since 2006, K9 Handler since 2009

K9 Sig, a black Labrador retriever, will do anything for a ball and he loves to swim. Read more

Warden Michael Latti and K9 Luna

Gorham district
Warden since 2017, Currently in K9 Handler training

K9 Luna, a black Labrador retriever, is focused and always ready for the next challenge and looking forward to her next reward. Read more

Warden Kris MacCabe and K9 Morgan

Farmington district
Warden since 2007, K9 Handler since 2011

K9 Morgan, a black Labrador retriever, is playful and a puppy at heart. Read more

Warden Kevin Pelkey and K9 Arjen

Charleston district
Warden since 2007, K9 Handler since 2010

K9 Arjen, a Dutch shepherd, enjoys walking in the woods and spending time with his family. Read more

Warden Preston Pomerleau and K9 Gordon

Ashland district
Warden since 2006, Currently in K9 Handler training

K9 Gordon is named in honor of Maine Game Warden Pilot Daryl R. Gordon who died in the line of duty in northern Aroostook County in 2011. Read more

Warden Chad Robertson and K9 Storm

Skowhegan district
Warden since 2013, K9 Handler since 2016

K9 Storm, a black Labrador retriever, is very easy to please, loves to work, and has a ton of drive! Read more

Training

To get their initial certification with the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, Maine Warden Service K9s complete a 14-week intensive training program and pass initial certification tests. To maintain their certification, they are required to train for a minimum of 24 hours every quarter under the direct supervision of a certified trainer and pass an annual re-certification field test.

Handlers often work on training daily on their own to balance and strengthen the multiple disciplines their K9s are trained in. The Maine Warden Service K9 unit typically trains as a group at least two to three times a month. The unit also trains in conjunction with the Maine State Police to work specifically on Human Remains detection at a minimum of once a month.

Once initial training and certification have taken place much of the ongoing training focuses on maintaining proficiency and building skill sets. Scenario-based trainings are used to replicate new challenges that may have occurred on an actual search.

On the Blog

K9 School: The Start of Tracking

You may be wondering, why would a K9 need to be able to find a metal washer?

Read more »

K9 School: Basic Obedience

The past few months have been unusual to say the least. Restrictions due to COVID-19 has made some aspects of training difficult and quite different.

Read more »

Selecting the most promising K9s for the Maine Warden Service

It is imperative we find the best candidates to serve as Maine game wardens, and that remains true when it comes to selecting dogs for the Maine Warden Service K9 Unit.

Read more »