2 new dogs join TPD's K-9 unit - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

2 new dogs join TPD's K-9 unit

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The Toledo police department has two new K-9's to search the streets for drugs. These new officers have been on the beat for the three months. Tanko is a year and a half old and so is Wespe. They're both German shepherds. Wespe's handler says she's more than a partner she's family.

"The dogs are with us here at work all the time and they're also with us at home all the time so we are actually with the dogs more than we are with our family," said Toledo police detective Brian Gaylord.  

The K-9 team is trained to search for hidden drugs. We put Wespe to the test. Police put cocaine in this metal container and hid it in this car. Wespe sniffed the entire car. It didn't take her long to find it

"They smell differently than we do. Lets say when we walk into a McDonald's we smell McDonald's. When they walk into McDonald's they smell the buns the pickles the mustard the ketchup. They can actually separate all those odors," said Detective Gaylord.

Wespe and Tanko are called aggressive indicators. When they get a hit they stop, dig and scratch. Other K-9 dogs will sit to alert their partner.

They're rewarded when they do a good job. The dogs also visit schools to help educate the youth about the dangers of drugs and they get a quick lesson on police work.

"A lot of times the only times kids will have any contact with the police is when mom and dad are getting a traffic citation or in case they are at the home for domestic violence so it's a different aspect how they see us with the drugs," said Toledo police detective John Greenwood.

TPD is exploring adding more K-9 units to the force for tracking and building searches. Wespe and Tanko's handlers say there's not day their partners don't want to go work.

"They start to learn very quickly when you're grabbing your gun, when they start to hear the keys they know they are getting ready to come to work and they are right there at the back door," said detective Greenwood.

TPD had two other police dogs but they just recently retired because of health problems.



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