Toys & Training

Mecosta County Sheriff’s Ok-9 will get new handler Sgt. Charlie Pippin

BIG RAPIDS — A police division’s Ok-9 unit could be a nice profit within the work it does, and the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Workplace just lately obtained a $1,875 grant from the Nice Lakes Power Folks Fund which was used to buy gear for its Ok-9 officer, Zeke.

The division just lately went by way of a transition of handlers, and Sgt. Charlie Pippin has taken possession of Zeke from his former handler Chad Thompson and has begun coaching with Zeke to ease each of them into their new working relationship.  

Sheriff Brian Miller mentioned Pippin and Zeke make a superb match.

“Zeke was with Deputy Thompson, who resigned attributable to well being causes. and Charlie stepped up and I used to be actually enthusiastic about it. Charlie’s a go-getter,” Miller mentioned. “He is fairly aggressive, fairly proactive, and any individual that I imagine would profit from having the canine together with them on stops and in any other case.” 

Pippin just lately introduced Zeke residence to get aware of his household and two different canine. He mentioned issues went properly. 

“He is blended proper into our household very well,” Pippin mentioned. “I normally hold them outdoors. I’ve two different canine as properly, and so they get alongside fantastic however I form of hold them separate so he would not get drained out. He is a working canine and is a instrument to make use of for work, however I additionally see him as a pet after we’re not at work. I hold him energetic, I can not see simply conserving a canine in a kennel all day lengthy and solely getting them out when he must work, so we do numerous taking part in and strolling.” 

Members of Nice Lakes Power assist the Folks Fund by voluntarily rounding up their payments to the following highest greenback. The rounded-up quantity is distributed to non-profit organizations and charitable actions that profit individuals in communities served by the cooperative.

Teresa O’Neil, the division’s workplace liaison, was concerned within the grant course of and noticed the wants Zeke had. The cash from the grant will assist the division construct him a brand new canine home, one which Zeke gained’t have the ability to tear aside when he performs. New concrete was additionally poured for Zeke’s new kennel, which was paid for by the grant cash the division obtained.  

Sergeant Pippin and Zeke just lately started their common coaching periods which contain working towards drills and listening instructions as a pair. Zeke trains primarily with narcotic drug detection, retrieval, monitoring, and crime scene work. 

Pippin mentioned he’ll usually open the middle hatch in his patrol automobile in order that Zeke can stick his head up into the entrance seat for some bonding. 

“I did a situation the place we had any individual in a room in a home and I despatched (Zeke) in, and he has to find the place they’re at,” Pippin mentioned. “We do coaching bi-weekly. Each different week, we go to coaching in numerous places, and I practice alone as properly. If I am on patrol, I’d cease and perform a little bit of coaching for an hour or so with him. And even on my off days, I will have my children serving to me out at residence performing some both monitoring or hiding gadgets for him to have the ability to find.” 

Pippin mentioned the German Shepherd breed is well-known within the police Ok-9 group and has been used for many years for police work. The malamute breed can also be recognized to be a police canine breed and is understood for extra aggressive assault work attributable to its measurement and energy. 

The division has stopped coaching Zeke to detect marijuana, however he nonetheless is aware of learn how to detect different narcotics. 

“There are specific limits to what you need to practice a canine to do,” Pippin mentioned. “We do not practice him for marijuana anymore, as a result of right here in Michigan it’s authorized, and we do not need him targeted on that scent if there’s one thing else within the automobile, it might probably spoil a case.

“They are often bombed canine, nevertheless it’s usually both a drug or bomb,” he added. “You are restricted to what you are able to do with one canine. Simply since you do not need to confuse them.”

In keeping with Pippin and Miller, the profession span of a working canine in a division is normally between eight to 9 years relying on the breed.

The Sheriff’s Division has had a Ok-9 unit for round 12 years and has had two different canine work within the division outdoors of Zeke. 
Pippin mentioned coaching has taught him rather a lot already and the bonding goes properly. 

“I realized that I’ve extra to study than he does, that is for positive about this kind of work,” Pippin mentioned. “Outdoors of labor, he simply performs with balls, he loves them. If he will get one, it’s worthwhile to have balls which might be indestructible. He additionally likes to be outdoors, identical to any canine.”

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