The National City Police Department’s (NCPD) K-9 officers received some important new equipment Tuesday: custom-made, protective ballistic vests.
NCPD officials unveiled the vests, which were recently delivered to the police department for the four-legged officers. The department's three police canines were each measured and fiited for their tailored vests.
The NCPD said the equipment is the result of fundraising efforts by National City’s three service clubs, The Rotarians, Lions and Kiwanis.
When a Rotarian member – who happens to be a dog lover – found out NCPD canines were not equipped with ballistic vests, he took it upon himself to speak with other service clubs about fundraising options to buy and donate the vests to the department.
A successful pancake fundraiser event generated the money needed for the canine vests, the department said.
The NCPD said the equipment will have great impact on the safety of K-9 officers protecting the community.
Sgt. Alex Hernandez said the vests are heavy-duty, so it is possible for K-9 officers to overheat if they wore them for an entire shift.
Thus, Sgt. Hernandez said the K-9s will wear the vests effective immediately during “high risk” calls. This will be at the discretion of the handler, he added.