Sheriff department in need of donations for K-9 cruisers

Hollidaysburg, Blair County, Pa. - The Blair County Sheriff's Department has two working K-9s ready for duty, but they haven't been able to come to work.

The department officially introduced Rik last week.

He's certified in all of his training including bomb sniffing, tracking, and bite work.

He's not on duty with his K-9 handler and neither is the other bomb dog.

Their one and only k-9 vehicle died early this summer.

Deputy Steve Nader and Corporal Richard Peo are on duty without their partners.

"We have two dogs that are fully capable, fully trained, fully certified but right now they're basically sitting at the house," said Deputy Nader. 

3 year-old-Rik and 11 year-old Lily are armed with noses to sniff out bombs.

Corporal Peo says they can't be on duty because the department doesn't have vehicles outfitted for their use.

"If we were to put a police dog in the back of this this creates a lot of hazards for the dog. They can get their feet caught down in the seats and some of them different crevices," explained Peo.  

The vehicles need fitted kennels and heat controls to protect the K-9s. Peo says the dogs are assets to the community.

"In the past 4 years I would say she was out on 3 or 4 dozen calls and that's ranging anywhere between suspicious packages to school threats."

The department's K-9 program is driven by community donations.

"We don't raise enough money with donations to support vehicles. Corporal Peo's vehicle dying was not part of the plan however it did and now we're stuck with two dogs and no vehicles, Nader said. 

Nader says Rik wants to come to work but safety comes first. 

"Soon as I put that vest on he'll do circles around the island in my kitchen until I'm ready to go and as soon as I take one step towards the door he full speed right to the door and he'll sit there and wait for me until I open the door."

Even though Rik and Lily can't physically come to work, their services can still be used across the county. Deputies will just have to pick the dogs up if they're needed. 


Donations can be mailed to:

Central PA Community Foundation

C/O Blair County K-9 Foundation

1330 11th Ave. 

Altoona, PA 16601

 

Or call 814-944-6102


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