Those who attended a recent swearing in of a San Rafael Police Department K9 said the event definitely went to the dogs.
The K9 Division had been out of operation for several years, according to local officials, and many were thrilled to be at a point where two new fuzzy department members were being sworn in.
Both German Shepherds were obedient at the Monday night city council meeting, but one of them became so excited he felt the need to vocalize his excitement. As soon as the person who was doing the swearing in uttered the words “repeat after me”, the K9 named Faro chose to burst into song.
Council members began laughing. Audience members started to chuckle.
The San Rafael Police Department had reportedly been without a K9 unit since about 2003. The program needed to be cut due to budget restrictions, they said, but it was never something they wanted to willfully give up. Prior to that time, they were the go-to department when other Marin law enforcement agencies needed to borrow police dogs.
Sometimes they were asked to help locate missing persons. Other times they were used to help sniff out drugs or explosive devices.
Marin county officials say the San Rafael Police Department now has the second largest K9 unit next to Novato. The dogs have been specially trained and are able to assist in a number of different ways.
Officers said a generous grant from the Sean M. Welsh K9 Memorial Foundation helped pay for one of the dogs. A grant from the Moulding Company helped pay for the acquisition and training of the other.
The department has announced they will be holding a community fundraiser in late September in order to help cover some of their other K9 related expenses. That event will be held at the San Rafael Film Center on Sept. 28. It will be hosted by the San Rafael Police K9 Association and all proceeds will benefit the department.