Fort Pierce officers get two new K9s for patrol work
Both dogs are Dutch Shepherd mixes, and both will be celebrating their first birthday in February.
Tucker, who has mostly brown and black streaks known as brindle, was chosen by Officer Albert Eckrode because of his “upbeat energy.” The name Tucker was given at the request of an anonymous donor who contributed to the department’s K9 program. Tucker now lives with the officer at his home.
Loki is mostly solid black and is living in Officer Robie Troutman’s home. Officer Troutman named Loki after a Norse legend who was associated with being a mischief maker. The name reflects the dog’s personality, which became evident when the puppy climbed into the officer’s kitchen sink. However, Loki’s greatest asset so far is his willingness to work hard, Officer Troutman said.
The dogs were purchased Tuesday from a nationally known firm in southwest Miami-Dade County. Several K9 candidates did meet-and-greets with the officers — think “speed dating” — but each dog that was selected had just the right qualities to match what the officers needed for their styles of work in Fort Pierce. And forming a bond between officer and dog is a major part of the selection process.
Now both K9 teams will spend the next three months or so training at the Port St. Lucie Police Department’s K9 training center. They will work on building their relationships, learning commands, search techniques, tracking, pursuits and even dealing with sounds of gunfire.
“Having an effective K9 unit is an important part of doing good police work, and we are very excited to welcome Tucker and Loki to our family,” said Chief Diane Hobley-Burney.