Wounded Police Dog Returns to Force

By Michelle Wayland
|  Thursday, Jan 20, 2011  |  Updated 6:30 PM PDT
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A police dog that was shot in the mouth during an October shootout that killed veteran San Diego police officer Christopher Wilson returned to the force on Thursday.

Monty, a Belgian Malinois, was shot in the head while assisting US Marshals and San Diego police back in October while they were searching for a suspect in a Skyline apartment.

“There’s nothing I was going to be able to do at that time. Best thing I could do is get out of there,” said Monty's handler, Mike McLeod.

He rushed Monty to a local hospital.

“It was a Code 3 run all the way from southeast Mission Valley, so I didn’t get a chance to look at him,” said McLeod.

It wasn’t until he was in a room with the dog that he realized the extent of his injuries.

“It was just a tremendous amount of blood. That always shakes you up a little bit to see something that you love bleeding that profusely and you can’t do anything to stop it,” said McLeod.

Monty was treated at a local veterinary hospital and after extensive treatment and recuperation he has been released to return to full duty as a police service dog.

“You do bond with the dogs, but for some reason this dog and I have really bonded extra. Certainly, this experience has done that, too,” said McLeod.

He says Monty is extra loving.

“If I sit down somewhere, he thinks he’s a lap dog. He will be in my lap. He cannot get close enough to me. He’s just a big play. He’s just a big love. He’s not tough at all. But yet he is tough,” he said.

McLeod knows that when the time comes to it, Monty will work in the field.

“I’m not worried about anybody defeating this dog. He just works really, really well in the field, and I have great confidence in him,” said McLeod.

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