WAREHAM, Mass. – A community in Wareham, Massachusetts, is raising money for a police service dog’s retirement expenses after hearing that he needed to undergo medical care.
K9 Rolf, a German shepherd who has served the Wareham Police Department for nine years, had gotten older and has become the responsibility of his handler, Officer Mike Phinney, the Wareham Week reported.
When Phinney’s friend Geoff Worrell heard that Rolf was having medical issues, he teamed up with a local consignment shop owner to sell raffle tickets that will help raise funds that will help cover Rolf’s medical expenses.
When police service dogs retire, the handler that worked with them typically takes them on for the balance of their life. As a result, officers also absorb their medical expenses.
Throughout January, Worrell and consignment shop owner Traci Medieros sold raffle tickets to raise money. As a result, they brought in about $1,500 for the aging service dog.
On January 31, the fundraiser organizers raffled off 43-inch screen television to the winner in time for the Super Bowl, Breitbart reported.
Worrell said the experience was an opportunity to spread awareness, adding that he would like to see a policy in place that offers monetary support for retired police service dogs.
Other communities have rallied around their retired K9s so they can stay with their owners as they gracefully age through retirement. A Washington state community in King County rallied around its K9 going blind so he could keep his eyesight in October 2019, according to the Courier-Herald.
And in Minnesota, a community in West St. Paul raised $9,000 so an officer could keep his retired K9 partner, the Grand Forks-Herald reported.