Call Us TODAY on 020 3588 4240

Another Shooting | Another Reason for Vapor Wake Dogs

Worth Sharing?

Download Our Free E-book

Get Access to the Best Content on High Court Enforcement

When you choose Shergroup Security as your integrated security provider, you are choosing a company with heritage and integrity.

Every time we hear of an active shooter incident, we think how could a Vapor wake dog have prevented that happening. To be honest there are so many of these wretched and unnecessary events it is a subject which is constantly on our radar. The challenge is to get more people aware of the capability of these animals, and then to figure out how to deploy them.


VWK9 – Vapor wake dog


This week we have seen 2 shootings in shopping areas – one in El Paso, TX and one in Dayton, OH. In relation to both, if a VWK9 had been on patrol there is a strong likelihood the shooter would have been identified as carrying explosive material being the bullets in the guns – much sooner. This is because a VWK9 is trained to sniff out explosive residue in the human plume of the person who has been handling explosives – and bullets have that explosive residue.


Risk Assessment Framework


So, if we put this fact into a risk assessment framework in simple terms how does that work? The trouble with active shooters in many situations is that their appearance is totally random. Intel from law enforcement cannot predict a person in mental anguish who one day decides to pick up a gun and go on a killing rampage.


Instead, we have to look at the sorts of venues where active shootings have occurred. A report in Time Magazine this week refers to 37 years of mass shootings in the US, with an infographic depicting the numbers of people killed and wounded by active shooters. In this graphic, the worst incident is by far the shooting in Las Vegas from the Mandalay Bay hotel in which 51 people were killed and over 400 people were wounded (see ). As the article mentions a mass shooting is defined as any incident with over 3 fatalities. And quite rightly, the statistics do not include the thousands of gun killings involving 2 or fewer people.


Vapor Wake K9

So, it made us think about if we were Walmart what could it do as an American icon in the retail sector, to take a stand against copycat active shooters. Our recommendation would be to put a VWK9 on patrol during store opening hours at Supercenters and develop some data around just how many people are entering its retail estate with live ammunition. We don’t know if Walmart has ever done a study of this type of risk, but the brand seems to have a higher risk of active shooter involvement than other retailers. There are over 3,000 of these types of Walmart store in the US according to statistics on the size of the Walmart estate (see ) but what a great community project for Walmart to take the lead on. It’s a household name, and it must want to protect its brand from future incidents.


Walmart could lean on the experiences of a couple of huge brands in the US to justify such an approach. Walt Disney World has a fully-fledged Vapor Wake program as do the NFL. An article was written in Sports Business Daily (see ) explains how Vapor Wake has been introduced to national stadiums and now the NFL to sweep before and provide security at entrances, for major league games.


The bottom line is if the Government feels unable to react to prevent active shootings then those brands with the clout and budget to respond should do so – to protect their brand and their stakeholders from harm. Obviously, there is a cost to this and ultimately this filters down to the consumer buying the product or service.


Vapor Wake dogs are not a panacea to prevent mass shootings, but they are a useful and smart way to start to tackle the problem of identifying where guns crop up, the sort of guns people are carrying, and whether those guns will be allowed on to different sorts of property. Think hotels, schools, hospitals, shopping malls, retail stores, banks and then think do we want a person carrying a gun on our property. Only a proper risk assessment will bring an organization to the policy it wants to impose on its visitors and employees but at least it’s the start of a conversation about do you really need to be carrying that sort of gun in Walmart?

Content Writer​


The following disclaimer applies to Shergroup Limited and its platform, Please read this notice carefully before accessing or using any information provided on our platform.

  1. No Legal Advice | The information presented on, including but not limited to articles, blog posts, FAQs, and other resources, is provided for general informational purposes only. It is not intended to be, and should not be considered, legal advice. The information provided does not create a solicitor/client relationship between Shergroup Limited and the user.
  2. Not a Substitute for Legal Advice | The information on should not be relied upon as a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a qualified professional. The application of laws and regulations can vary based on specific circumstances, and legal advice tailored to your particular situation is crucial. Therefore, we may refer you to a member of our partner firm -Shergroup Legal – on legal matters or encourage you to take your own legal advice from your preferred advisor.
  3. No Guarantee of Accuracy | While we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, Shergroup Limited does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of any information on The legal landscape is constantly evolving, and laws may vary across jurisdictions. Therefore, any reliance you place on the information provided is at your own risk.
  4. No Liability | Shergroup Limited, including its officers, employees, agents, and affiliates, shall not be held liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, or punitive damages arising out of your access to or use of or any information contained therein. This includes, but is not limited to, any errors or omissions in the content, or any actions taken or not taken based on the information provided.
  5. Third-Party Links | may contain links to third-party websites or resources. These links are provided solely for convenience and do not imply endorsement or responsibility for the content, accuracy, or legality of such websites or resources. Shergroup Limited shall not be liable for any damages or losses incurred as a result of accessing or using any third-party websites or resources.
  6. Changes to Disclaimer | Shergroup Limited reserves the right to modify or amend this disclaimer notice at any time without prior notice. Any changes will be effective immediately upon posting on It is your responsibility to review this notice periodically for updates.

By accessing or using, you acknowledge that you have read, understood, and agreed to this disclaimer notice. If you do not agree with any part of this notice, you should refrain from accessing or using

Last updated | 19 July 2023

Should you have any questions or concerns regarding this disclaimer notice, please contact us at [email protected]