SAGINAW, Mich. (WJRT) — A decade-long alliance between a police canine association and Saginaw police is coming to an end, as the group says the dogs aren’t getting proper medical attention.
The city council just approved the purchase of Krixus, and the Saginaw Valley Police Canine Association usually pays for the dogs, but declined this time because they question whether the dogs are getting prompt medical attention.
Saginaw City Council approved the purchase of a new K-9 this week using donated funds. Krixus, a 2-year-old Belgian malinois, has already started training with officer Megan Nelson.
They have become household names over the years for many people in central Michigan. Of course, there’s Deebo, now retired, and Cigan, who is doing a demonstration with students.
Saginaw’s police dogs have become a staple of the department.
The entity that has purchased many dogs over the past ten years is the Saginaw Valley Police Canine Association, but the nonprofit’s president, Jody Wilk, emailed the police department and the city council saying it was time to end the relationship. with the police department.
Wilk declined to speak about the issue on camera, but said it was something the association didn’t want to happen.
This email sent to Police Chief Bob Ruth earlier this month says the nonprofit is concerned about the health of K-9 Denver, which the association purchased in February, but s worried about problems with dogs’ eyes and teeth.
The association isn’t sure the dog is healthy enough to do police work.
The association then decided not to fund the new police department dog, Krixus, because they wanted to see what they called a clean bill of health for this dog.
So Saginaw City Council approved $12,500 for the purchase of the dog at Monday’s council meeting, which seems to indicate the city is distancing itself from the nonprofit.
Three city council members said they were unaware of any issues between the police department and the K-9 Association.
The association said it has raised more than $100,000 for the purchase and care of dogs over the past ten years.
Late Thursday, Saginaw Town Manager Tim Morales and Police Chief Bob Ruth released a statement, saying in part that they appreciate all that the association has done for the K-9 program. , but that they had decided to make the transition to do their own fundraising for their K-9 program.