Photo Information

U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Adam Cook, left, the kennel master for the Provost Marshal Office with Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron, conducts military working dog detection training at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Iwakuni, Nov. 20, 2019. The training was part of a joint force detection exercise with Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) soldiers. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Triton Lai)

Photo by Lance Cpl. Triton Lai

US Marines, Japanese Soldiers work with military working dogs

26 Nov 2019 | Lance Cpl. Triton Lai Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan

U.S. Marines with Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force Soldiers conducted military working dog detection training exercises at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Nov. 21, 2019.

JMSDF MWD handlers visit MCAS Iwakuni quarterly for training. The purpose of the training is to give them the opportunity to train their dogs with U.S. Marine Corps training aids, use different facilities on the air station and share knowledge between the two different services regarding MWDs.

“Training with the JMSDF is a great experience for everybody,” said U.S. Marine Corps 1st Lt. Justin Weaver, operations officer of the Provost Marshal Office. “They learn from us and we learn from them."

U.S. Marines and JMSDF Soldiers conduct MWD detection training exercises Photo by Lance Cpl. Triton Lai


The PMO military working dogs train almost four hours every day depending on the specifics of the working dog. They train for real life scenarios, patrolling, odor detection and to increase physical fitness.

“Our K-9 units perform very well,” said Weaver. “They are in charge of every kind of customs sweep that comes through for every event.”

Weaver said that in the future, there may be the opportunity for PMO Marines from MCAS Iwakuni to use JMSDF facilities for more bilateral exercises and to further build their relationship with JMSDF.