In February of 1985, the Sheriff’s Department recognized the need to initiate a K-9 program. This program has significantly reduced the man-hours used searching for suspects, evidence and lost children. Officer Safety has also been significantly impacted by the implementation of a K-9 Unit. Seven deputies and their canine partners currently provide coverage within the County. Their high-visibility acts as a powerful deterrent for criminal activity. High levels of training and commitment of the canine deputies, has established this Unit as one of the most highly respected in the state.
With the utilization of just one dog team, the Department is able to reduce the manpower needed to search large building and open rural areas, by over 50%. Additional benefits are the reduction in property loss and injuries to Deputies as well as, an increase in the number of arrests of subjects who were in the act of committing crimes.
The OCPCA is a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization comprised of law enforcement K-9 handlers who are dedicated to receiving the most current and highest quality training available. Training is a key factor that ensures the best possible service to the community. The OCPCA was started in 1983 by several law enforcement canine handlers in an effort to share information about the training and use of canines in law enforcement. As the OCPCA grew, they began to host an annual canine demonstration for the public that served as a fundraiser for the OCPCA.
In the fall of each year, the OCPCA has continued the tradition of hosting their annual canine benefit show. At the exciting family show, you can see K-9 teams perform obedience, agility, apprehension, handler protection, explosive and narcotic detection.
Through the benefit show, the OCPCA raises funds which are donated to assist the families of fallen officers, provide medical care for retired police K-9s, assist police departments needing to replace retired K-9s, and provide further training for K-9 teams.