ST. GEORGE — The Cedar City Police Department is hoping to improve the safety of its K-9 officer after a recent donation allowed them access to a bullet-protective vest for the animal.
The nonprofit organization Vested Interest in K9s out of Massachusetts is responsible for delivering the vest to Cedar City. Local resident, Joanna Boyd, of Leeds, Utah sponsored the donation.
The organization says it donated more than 3,500 protective vests to K-9 units in all 50 states. According to a press release from the Cedar City Police Department, donations for a vest can run upwards of $950.
Vests donated to local police departments are designed to protect against injury or death from firearms as well as stab wounds during an altercation.
Cedar City’s K-9 Max is a 3-year-old Belgian Malinois. Max is certified in patrol and narcotics and has been a member of the Cedar City Police Department since October 2017, starting training in January of 2018.
Once the vest is delivered in the next eight to 10 weeks, it will be embroidered with the phrase “Born to Love – Trained to Serve- Loyal Always.”
K-9 officers become eligible to receive a protective vest through the program after they have received certification and are at least 20 months of age. New K-9 graduates and four-legged officers with expired vests are also eligible.
Vested Interest in K9s says it has provided over 3,500 protective vests through its donations since its founding in 2009, totaling more than $5 million in value.
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