Sunday, March 7th, 2021

Funding sought for new K-9 program

Posted: Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Huntington County Sheriff’s Department is working to create a police patrol/narcotics canine program. This program would assist the sheriff’s department in its effort to provide the community with the most efficient police team possible, be an invaluable tool in the ongoing battle against criminal activity in the area and help with the ongoing effort to make Huntington the safest community possible.

The sheriff’s department plans to fund the program through community support and fundraising. The cost of the K-9 police dog is estimated at $6500 and both the Allen County Sheriff’s Department and the Fort Wayne City Police Department have offered to provide training at no cost. Additional costs will include veterinary bills, food and some equipment with a fundraising goal of $15,000 for these items.

The community is being asked to come alongside efforts to fund the new K-9 unit and the sheriff’s department is asking local businesses and community leaders for contributions that will make the program possible. All contributions will go into a fund which will be used to purchase the police canine and all necessary equipment. The police canine would not be limited to use in the county of Huntington but would also assist any agency that would request its services.

A police dog is trained in protection, building searches and tracking and may be cross trained in narcotics, explosives, cadaver or even arson detection. A dog’s sense of smell is 100 times more powerful than a human’s and the hearing, eight times more sensitive, providing invaluable skills to the sheriff’s department. The police dog serves as a “backup” partner to its handler, an officer that trains the canine and spends the majority of their life with the dog. “Booker” was the last working K-9 that was part of the Huntington County Sheriff’s Department and was retired in 2005. The sheriff’s department has been without a canine program since that time.

A Fish and Tenderloin Dinner will begin the fundraising efforts for the K-9 Program on Wednesday, September 21. The dinner is being sponsored by the Modern Woodmen of America Chapter 13137 at the PAL Club, 2099 Riverside Drive from 4 to 7 p.m. The Modern Woodmen of America’s home office will match all proceeds raised up to $2500. The cost of the dinner is $9 for ages 13 and up, $5 for ages 6 to 12 and age 5 and under are free. Daniel W. Fulton is the activities coordinator for Chapter 13137.

For more information about the new K-9 unit or to contribute to the program, contact Sheriff Terry Stoffel at the Huntington County Sheriff’s Department, 332 E. State Street, Huntington. The phone number is (260) 356-2520 or fax, (260) 358-4877.