Canfield police welcome newest K9 as dog of 8 years retires

The Canfield Rotary Club covered the cost of the 2-year-old Dutch Shepherd, Rocky, and all of his training

Rocky, Canfield Police K9
Rocky


CANFIELD, Ohio (WKBN) – The Canfield Police Department introduced its new K9 officer, Rocky, on Tuesday while celebrating the retirement of Thor, the police dog Rocky is replacing.

Thor is 10 years old and has been serving the department for the last eight years.

He was forced to retire because of health problems. The German Shepherd suffers from hip dysplasia in his hind legs, meaning his hip joint is malformed.

It’s a struggle for Thor to walk nowadays.

“They started probably about two years ago, jumping in and out of the cruiser. When I had to start helping him get up in the car, that’s when I knew it was time for him to retire,” said Canfield Police K9 Handler Chad DeBarr.

Thor hasn’t been used for police work since spring. DeBarr said Thor’s specialty was finding drugs but his best accomplishment came last November when he found a missing girl in North Jackson. DeBarr said she was unconscious in the woods.

“The ER doctor stated to us that if that girl had been in the elements 15 or 20 minutes later, she might’ve had some issues.”

Rocky, the newest K9 officer, is also a Shepherd breed. He’s been working for the department since May.

Rocky is a multi-purpose officer — he is used for protection, drug searches, and tracking scents.

The Canfield Rotary Club covered the cost of the 2-year-old Dutch Shepherd and all of his training.

“We want to maintain what we have and make it better. That’s why we figured, what a better way than get a nice, new, younger dog and keep up the good work in the Canfield Police Department,” said Don Dragish, with the Canfield Rotary Club.

There’s no guarantee Rocky won’t also suffer from hip issues in the future.

“This is a disease of large breed dogs,” said Brandt Athey, a veterinarian at Austintown Veterinary Clinic.

He said Shepherds aren’t high on the list of dogs having a disposition of hip dysplasia.

“Certainly, it can happen in any breed. We worry about it mostly in large breed dogs because those are the dogs that have enough weight on those hind limbs where might not only they be dysplastic, but then they would show clinical signs.”

Athey said keeping a dog lean, especially when it’s young and growing, can help prevent hip problems.

Thor is going to continue living with Officer DeBarr, who had to pay the city $1 to keep him.

.

WKBN 27 First News provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. No links will be permitted. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s