A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Alpha Dogs features dogs being trained to assist in important (and often dangerous) security and military operations. Dogs bare sharp teeth, attack people in protective suits, and on occasion accidentally bite their handler (bloody wounds visible) during training and practice sessions. The language is pretty salty ("hell," "piss," "ass," "Goddamn," "bitch"; stronger words bleeped), too. The series contains messages about patriotism and supporting the military.
What's the story?
ALPHA DOGS is a reality series featuring the staff of Vohne Liche Kennels as they train working dogs for law enforcement, security teams, and military personnel. Owner Ken Licklider works with an experienced staff, including Director of Law Enforcement Operations Dan Parker, Director of Military Operations Bobby Roettger, and former Air Force Security Specialist Yasmin Gonzalez, to produce hundreds of dogs who will help police officers, government agencies like the Pentagon, and soldiers do their jobs better and more safely. They also work with the dogs' future handlers and teams of soldiers to make sure that they know how to interact with the dogs correctly. It's a tough business, but one that is committed to helping the men and women protecting the country, one canine at a time.
Is it any good?
Alpha Dogs offers an interesting look at the kind of precise and detailed work that goes into producing dogs that are used to help locate cadavers, sniff out things like bombs, drugs, and money, and even rappel down walls during SWAT operations. The show highlights some of the methods used to train the animals, as well as the different organizations that purchase them.
Dog lovers will enjoy watching how the trainers and handlers, who clearly enjoy working with canines, interact with them both professionally and socially. Meanwhile, the dogs featured here are definitely superheroes-in-training. Overall, the series succeeds in showcasing what goes into transforming "man's best friend" into one of the most important contributors to law and security enforcement today.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about animals on TV and in movies. What do you know about animal safety rules and laws when it comes to TV and film? Can you find out how laws have changed over time?
What are the messages in this show about the military? Are the explicit or implied?
What other workplace reality shows do you watch? Who is the audience for these kinds of shows? How can you tell?
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