Dogs
K9 injured in line of duty is honored when released from hospital
Arlo got the hero's salute he deserved.
Irene Markianou
02.21.22

Dogs are adorable, but they are also smart and skillful creatures. Their sense of smell is over 400,000 times greater than a human being, which means they are excellent at detecting stuff that smells. And this is only one of the duties police dogs have.

Unsplash - Marisa Teruel
Source:
Unsplash - Marisa Teruel

Intimidating-looking police dogs have a long history. In fact, they were first used by the French in the 1300s, when they accompanied armed citizens to patrol the city of Saint Marlo.

In the U.S., they were first introduced in New York in 1907, when the first K9 teams were established.

Unsplash - Hugo Delauney
Source:
Unsplash - Hugo Delauney

Since then, police dogs have been closely working with their human colleagues in order to make sure citizens are safe.

Of course, police dogs are still dogs and, no matter how tough and ruthless they look, they are still “good boys” deep inside.

Just like Arlo, a K9 who served with Washington’s Thurston County Sheriff’s Office since 2009. For more than a decade, Arlo served with dedication, always ready to go above and beyond to ensure the safety of the citizens.

Until January 2021, when the police dog was injured on duty. During a run-in with an armed suspect, he was shot twice and had to be hospitalized.

Although he underwent difficult and risky surgery, the brave boy survived, but vets said he would not be able to return to the Sheriff’s Office. After his injury, he would have to undergo more surgeries and receive specialized medical care, so going back to chasing evil guys was not an option anymore.

Arlo’s vets and carers decided it would be best for him to enter retirement after 12 years of service.

Although his colleagues were sad to let him go, they knew it was for the best given the circumstances. After all, everyone’s priority was to see Arlo thrive again, and they knew that this could only be achieved if he took some time to relax and refrain from police activities.

Arlo spent some time at Carlson College of Veterinary Medicine – Oregon State University, and when he was released, his colleagues had a surprise for him.

As you can see in the video that Thurston County Sheriff’s Office K9 Unit posted on Facebook, when Arlo left the hospital, officers were waiting for him outside so as to honor him.

Then the dog was put in a police car and taken home, where several police cars were waiting for him, along with a gigantic banner reading “Welcome Home, Arlo”. The dog hopped out of the car, and received a standing ovation.

The scene was so touching and heartwarming that Facebook users could not hold back their tears.

“Made me cry. So glad he is going home. Thank you to all the officers there to see him go home,” someone wrote, while another user commented: “Crying happy tears for sweet Arlo. So glad he is home and on the road to recovery.”

Watch Arlo receiving a hero’s salute in the video below.

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By Irene Markianou
[email protected]
Irene Markianou is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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