Group of powerful Republican business types want donated drug-hunting K9s back from state following defection of K9 NHP troopers from assignment.
Letter to DPS Director Chris Perry posted below:
Chris Perry, Director
Nevada Department of Public safety
555 Wright Way
Carson City, NV 89711-0900
Dear Director Perry:
We have learned through media accounts that Nevada Highway Patrol K-9 troopers have resigned their positions. While we regret the loss of such a valuable program, our primary concern is the fate of the K-9s donated by our organization. As you know, many of the K-9s are beyond the age where a transfer to a new handler is feasible. Adapting to a new training system will be very stressful as most of the K-9s are over 4 years of age. One of the younger K-9s is on daily medication administered by his handler. The stress endured by these wonderful service animals on a daily basis is enough. It's inhumane to subject them to new handlers at this point. While a new training system is an option, the department's trainers have resigned and DPS did not renew the contract for the original chief trainer, Donn Yarnall.
As stated in your letter of April 12, 2011, you retired 4-year-old NHP K-9 Popeye due to reassigning his handler. We hope you will display the same wise judgment in this matter.
Should DPS retain the NHP K-9s we anticipate you will provide for their needs by providing the following items previously made available by Nevada Friends of K-9:
· Equipment i.e. leashes, collars (K-9 equip) interdiction tools for troopers.
· K-9 Housing for K-9s i.e. air conditioning/heating, electrical service at the trooper’s residences to include crane service to install kennels in the trooper’s yards.
· Supplemental veterinarian needs to include contracting expert emergency veterinarian and to train K-9 Troopers for critical emergency situations for their partners, including rattlesnake vaccines that were kept exclusively for Police K-9s, and K-9 medical first air kits including drug overdose kits for K-9s.
We supported NHP budget restraints and hope your position has improved to that extent that you can make these resources available to these dedicated servants.
In the alternative, please accept this letter as our formal request to transfer the ownership and all liability to the Nevada State friends of K-9. We will investigate the best options for these great animals to be honored in their retirement.
Please let me know what we can do to assist the State with this matter. Thanks for your cooperation and we look forward to hearing from you.
Michael E. Nigro