LIVINGSTON COUNTY – The Livingston County Sheriff’s Office is welcoming their newest officer to the road, a four-footed K9 partner to Deputy Sheriff Michael Wade.
According to a press release from Sheriff Thomas Dougherty, Deputy Wade and K9 Hondo attended basic K9 team school with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office beginning in January 2016. The team successfully certified as a patrol and tracking K9 team on May 13, 2016.
No new K9 vehicle is necessary since health issues will soon force K9 Utah to retire from a long and fruitful career. The Sheriff’s K9 Division will be maintained at three K9-Deputy partner.
Hondo is a 2 year old purebred Belgian Malinois imported from the Netherlands and purchased from Shallow Creek Kennels in Pennsylvania. Dougherty said that the Malinois is a little more agile than the German Shepherd and a little less prone to hip and eye problems. The breed has been catching on in law enforcement for the past few years.
During the four-month basic school, Deputy Wade and K9 Hondo studied several topics including obedience, agility, handler protection, apprehension, human tracking and building and area searches. The training culminated with an intensive test where Deputy Wade and K9 Hondo were certified by NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services as Patrol and Tracking Canine Team.
Deputy Wade and K9 Hondo have been assigned to the STOP DWI unit working late evenings. They will be available to assist where the need for a K9 presents itself. After a short time working patrol Deputy Wade and K9 Hondo will head back to school this summer to attend Canine Narcotics Detection School where their goal is to certify as a dual purpose K9 team as a Patrol Tracking and Narcotics Detection K9.
Eric Gott, Public Services Committee member, Livonia Town Supervisor and Chairman of the Livingston County Board of Supervisors, said that Hondo sounds like a great asset to the Sheriff’s Office.