Mercoledì, 24 Febbraio 2016 15:39 | KZN police confirm handler will leave dog behind when he retires

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Durban - Police brass in KwaZulu-Natal have poured coldwater on an online petition to allow a retiring dog handler to take his K9partner with him.

This week, News24 reported that the online

movement had beengathering steam, garnering thousands of signatures.

Police dog handler Lieutenant Jack Haskins is set to retirein May this year after decades of distinguished service.

His departure is expected to be bittersweet, as his Searchand Rescue dog Bear will remain behind, with many years of service still tooffer.

Police spokesperson Major Thulani Zwane said that Bear wouldbe reissued to another handler with "many years of service still to offerto the community".

"This dog is still very young and has many years ofservice ahead of him as a police dog," he said.

"There is a severe shortage of police dogs currentlyand we will be doing a great disservice to the citizens of KwaZulu-Natal if wemove critical police resources because of our emotions," Zwane added.

"Lieutenant Haskins is puzzled at the petition as hehad no intention of requesting to keep the dog."

Speaking via Zwane, Haskins said: "I went on course in2015 to train Bear, knowing that I have to give him up. I've identified twohandlers in KZN who can take him over. The dog is a working dog and for me totake him home would be unfair to the dog. Bear can still give the police andthe community several years’ service."

Lieutenant Jack Haskins and Bear (Supplied to News24)
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