Today two new police patrol dog teams have been trained and graduated from the New Zealand Police Dog Training Center in Trentham and are ready to go. One team will be based in the South District (Invercargill) and the other in the Central District (Palmerston North).
Senior Constable Tom Evans graduated with his third operational dog, 2-year-old Rico. Tom has 20 years of police experience, including working as a detective and as a member of the Armed Offenders Squad (AOS).
“I have had Rico since he was 8 weeks old and have trained him from the beginning. I have.”
Senior Constable Evans and Rico will be based in Invercargill.
With 15 years of general experience on the front lines of the police force, he was the first to graduate as a working dog handler with 2-year-old Niho. Graduation is a special career goal for Senior Constable Shane Brooks, who has raised nine police dogs.
Shane joined the police force in 2007, starting in the Bay of Plenty area, serving in Taupo for 6 years, then moving to Hawke’s Bay East area for 9 years. He is currently based in the central district. “I’m really looking forward to starting life with Niho. She’s a good puppy. It’s been a long but rewarding journey,” he says.
Senior Constable Brooks and “Niho” will be on duty at Palmerston North.
Jill Rogers, Acting Assistant Secretary for People and Capabilities, congratulated the new team, saying they and their colleagues are playing an important role in a volatile, difficult and dynamic situation.
“Today is a proud day for you and those who have supported you,” she said. “A lot of people don’t understand the commitment, the work, the frustrations, the good, the bad, and the rewards of being on a management team.”
“Police dog teams have a range of equally important prevention and community engagement activities, which shows that the police are friendly and supportive to the public,” she said.
Inspector Todd Southall, the police dog national coordinator, said the new team has worked hard within the district and on formal courses to qualify. “It’s been a busy and demanding nine weeks of formal training for the trainers, but they’ve weathered the changeable weather and other challenges,” he says.
The motivation, dedication and talent of our new recruits are truly encouraging for the future of the dog sector. ”
“Our team’s versatility, skill and experience means we can deploy outside our local districts when needed.
Whanau and a friend of the alumni were present at the graduation ceremony, along with Iwi & Community Deputy Commissioner Chris De Watigner and Superintendent Warwick Moreff, Head of Training at the Royal New Zealand Police College (RNZPC).
Police Minister Ginny Andersen, whose husband was a former dog owner, attended the first police dog graduation ceremony.
Published by Police Media Center
https://www.police.govt.nz/news/release/%E2%80%98tail%E2%80%99-two-dog-teams Two Dog Team “Tails”