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Homeless To Joining the Force

COVENTRY, UNITED KINGDOM - OCTOBER 17, 2011: WEST Midlands Police dog 'Cassie' is proud mum to the latest litter of puppies born through the force's breeding scheme  a programme which has just been officially commended by the Kennel Club.  The seven-strong litter of German shepherd pups  four boys and three girls  were born at the force's Balsall Common dog unit last week.  It's the first litter since West Midlands Police were adopted into the Kennel Club's Assured Breeder Scheme  widely seen as the benchmark for responsible breeders in the UK.  (Photo: Anita Maric/Newsteam)

It does break ones heart to see homeless dogs roaming the streets or even those who are in shelters waiting for someone to finally adopt them. But in other place such dogs are put down just like they are lambs to the slaughter. Although shelters give homeless dogs a place to stay, it does tend to get a bit crowded at times and with how the economy is going there is a trickling flow of families willing to adopt one of these homeless pups. So it does brighten up ones heart when hearing that some organizations are opening their doors and training homeless dogs to join the police force. This way it can pave way for them to be an integral part in society in thwarting crime.

It is a fact that police departments across the country typically spend thousands upon thousands of dollars to purchase and train purebred dogs like German Shepherds and Belgian Malinois for K-9 work.

But an organization out of San Antonio, Texas, is proving law enforcement units can find great K-9 partners much closer to home, and all it takes is a visit to an animal shelter. Universal K9 founder and trainer Brad Croft says some of the best patrol dogs, narcotics detection dogs, and scent tracking dogs he’s worked with once found themselves on doggie death row. But with a little bit of faith and a lot of TLC and training, these homeless dogs have become skilled dogs on duty, performing jobs that keep communities safe.

The dogs Universal K9 saves and trains are then given to law enforcement units at no cost. Croft and Universal K9 have been able to rescue a whopping 60 dogs so far this year, and he says his organization is well on track to saving 100 dogs or more from euthanasia by the end of 2014.

Sadie, a 5-month-old mixed-breed dog, was close to becoming a statistic herself before she became the star student at Universal K9. Sadie was found on the side of the road but soon Sadie will find a job and a family with a police officer.

In addition to training homeless dogs to work in important working dog roles, Universal K9 is big on giving back. Their newest venture, “From Street Dog to Police Dog,” is a crowdfunding campaign aimed at protecting dogs and helping struggling communities. Funds raised will help police departments and schools with limited means afford police K9s and handler training, but it will also help save dogs on death row in shelters, the Digital Journal reports. Universal K9 hopes to raise $300,000 by the end of the campaign.

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