Fire-Rescue Dog Celebrates Retirement

By Megan Tevrizian and Lauren Steussy
|  Monday, Nov 19, 2012  |  Updated 2:07 PM PDT
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A Metro Arson Strike Team dog is retiring after six years.

A Metro Arson Strike Team dog is retiring after six years.

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After six years in the service of the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department, Hollie the black lab is retiring.

The 8-year-old black lab was the third accelerant detecting K9 with the Metro Arson Strike Team's San Diego station.

She began working when she was about two years old, and has been helping the station determine when substances like gasoline were used to intentionally start a fire.

"As an investigator, if we suspect that an accelerate such as gasoline is used in a fire, sometimes it's difficult for the investigators to determine where that accelerant resident may be," said San Diego Fire Captain Michael Merriken.

"That's when we bring Hollie in and have her sniff the area," he said. "If there's any residue left of the gasoline she's going to find it, shes going to alert us so we can take those samples to the lab."

Hollie's colleagues presented her with a grain-flavored cake Monday afternoon as they celebrated her heroic career.

She arrived to the ceremony freshly groomed and was applauded by many of the investigators and firefighters she helped throughout her career.

She will retire to pursue other interests, department officials said.

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