Completed kennels welcome home MWDs

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Mackenzie Richardson
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
Construction on the $1.7 million 92nd Security Forces Squadron Military Working Dog kennel project is now complete, increasing the overall square footage of the complex by more than 2,000 square feet.

The project included the creation of a new administration building for the unit and major upgrades to the existing kennel building, providing Airmen with the equipment and logistics needed to safely and effectively meet operational requirements.

“This new complex provides handlers and canines with their own space,” said Staff Sgt. Justin Benfer, 92nd SFS MWD kennel master. “The dedicated workspace for handlers has increased morale, will increase quality of work and will provide the handlers with a cleaner, healthier environment.”

The administration building includes office space, a conference room and three bathrooms. A veterinary exam room was also added, providing a safe, secure and sterile environment for the veterinarian to conduct medical visits with canines and train handlers on basic veterinarian practices.

“The upgraded complex allows for more hands-on training while on-site and gives handlers the space they need to learn and maintain new skills,” said Staff Sgt. Daniel Tabita, 92nd SFS MWD trainer. “It also gives the handlers and canines their own space to decompress and relax after work and training.”

The modern design of the kennel area allows for simplified cleaning, visual isolation from the other canines and a more comfortable environment for the MWDs.

Each canine has an 8-by-10 foot kennel and 4-by-4 foot dog house, increasing the overall square footage of living space from 24 square feet to nearly 100 square feet. A watering system was also built into the kennel, providing the canines with 24/7 access to fresh water. A new energy-efficient heating and cooling system was also installed, cycling air through the kennels roughly 12 times per hour. This keeps fresh air flowing and ensures the canines’ living quarters remain within 10 degrees of the temperature outdoors.

“The HVAC system allows the canines to be acclimated to the outside weather at all times,” said Benfer. “The improved system helps canines stay alert and ready to go at a moment’s notice.”

The entire complex also received a new sewer system, reducing maintenance requirements and potential health and safety hazards posed by the previous system. The upgrade gives handlers a safer, healthier and more efficient way to care for their canines.

The modernized complex provides the 92nd SFS MWD section with the tools, equipment and space to better prepare for future operating environments, maintain Fairchild security and help execute the rapid global mobility mission.