For a long time, Pit Bulls have had a bad reputation. These former shelter dogs are now not only saving police departments money, but they’re also s.a.v.i.n.g lives, thanks to some open-minded cops.
Pit bulls are still subjected to pre.jud.ice and breed di.scri.mina.tion in the United States. However, a few organizations in Texas are working to break down these barriers through a unique program in which r.e.s.c..u.e.d Pit Bulls are trained to become valuable K9 officers.
Faced with mounting financial constraints, some po.lice departments are turning to non-profit organizations such as Animal Farm Foundation for their K9 partners, which happen to be former shelter dogs.
Unlike traditionally bred and trained police dogs, which can cost upwards of $10,000 to acquire, these r.e.s.c.u.e.d dogs are provided free of charge thanks to the organizations’ sponsorships and dona.tions of time and money.
Animal Farm Foundation collaborates with local r.e.s.c.u.e organizations such as Austin Pets Alive! to find and fund shelter dogs that Universal K9 can train to be police dogs. Pit Bulls are among the r.e.s.c.u.e.d and specially trained dogs. Pit Bulls, despite their reputation for being dangerous and aggressive, make excellent K9s when given the opportunity.
“Any dog with the desire, drive, and confidence to work can do it!” “A dog’s ability to work is not determined by its breed,” says Universal K9 founder Brad Croft. Croft has long been a supporter of Pit Bulls and devised a plan to r.e.s.c.u.e and train them as po.lice dogs. Croft says he’s looking for curious, confident, and eager-to-please dogs. They must also possess the necessary instincts for detection work.
Mollie the K9 and her new handler She is a nar.co.tics officer with Appalachia PD VA and came from The Buster Foundation. Universal K9 (photo)
Austin Pets Returns! and local shelters keep an eye out for high-drive dogs who might be a good fit for Brad’s Universal K9 training program
The r.e.s.c.u.e.d Pit Bulls are trained to detect n.a.r.c.o.t.i.c.s, explosives, arson, miss.ing persons, and other po.lice duties once they arrive at Croft’s training facility.
Croft admits that placing Pit Bull type dogs with po.lice departments can be difficult, but he has found several open-minded officers with whom he has been able to place the dogs.
Although prejudice still exists, the Animal Farm Foundation’s sponsorships and financial support are helping to open more doors in police departments across the country.
Croft claims that since the program began, they’ve placed around 10 “Pit Bull” dogs with law enforcement agencies. K9 Libby, who works in Montgomery County, Texas, is one of them. “The World’s Raddest Police Dog,” as she’s been dubbed.
Kiah, a Pit Bull who was r.e.s.c.u.e.d from the Kirby Animal Shelter in Texas, became the Rookie K9 Sniffer Dog for the Poughkeepsie Police Department. Kiah has excelled in her duties to the point where she has been awarded the ASPCA Public Service Award. K9 Kiah is blazing a new path for other po.lice departments and “pit bull” dogs across the country as the first “pit bull” po.lice dog in the state of New York.
This is an incredible program that not only sav.es shelter dogs but also helps to dispel stereotypes and prejudices about the Pit Bull breed. These r.e.s.c.u.e.d dogs are making a huge difference in their communities by giving back.
Please tell your family and friends about this unique program.