Chiquita is an Explosive Detection Canine in the United States Coast Guard, she has been serving her country for 8 years and is 10 years old. She is a Belgian Malinois and was borne in Belgium. She will retire next summer having provided protection for two Presidents and First Ladies, the Vice President, the Governor of California and thousands of American’s traveling on waterborne mass transit systems around the country.
She is trained to deploy from helicopters to conduct at sea boardings on vessels entering and departing ports of the United States. She lives at home with handler Maritime Law Enforcement Specialist Chief Anthony Ross. She is one rank higher than her handler and is the only Senior Chief Canine currently serving in the Coast Guard’s Canine Explosive Detection Program.
RED WING — Matt Bowron has wanted to be a K9 handler ever since he watched a demonstration as a youngster at Ben Franklin Elementary School three decades ago.
After nearly six years of annoying his superior officers about it, an unlikely funding source finally made that dream come true.
In Nov. 2012, the Goodhue County Sheriff’s Office patrol deputy stumbled upon a Facebook post by Texas-based K9s for Cops offering grants to police officers seeking new canine units. After receiving permission to apply from Chief Deputy Lyle Lorenson, a frantic scramble ensued to beat the application deadline.
When an overly ambitious intern inadvertently posted the grant recipients on Facebook in January 2013, it sparked a celebration within the local sheriff’s department: Bowron was finally getting his patrol companion, Ambush, and his co-workers no longer had to listen to him bark about it.
“When I was a kid, one of the Rochester cops brought their dogs into the elementary school, and I just thought it was the coolest thing,” Bowron said. “When I got hired by the county (in 2008), I told them I wanted a dog, and I would be annoying about it.
“I got an award for something else (this year), and Lyle said, ‘Now you can finally stop whining about having a dog’ as he shook my hand.”
Good-natured banter aside, Ambush has proven a win-win for the department.
The grant of about $15,000 came at a time when the county was looking to carve hundreds of thousands of dollars from its budget. It’s uncertain whether the county board would have otherwise funded a new canine unit when Chopper was retired on Dec. 31 after nearly a decade of service.
Thanks to Bowron’s opportune find, the county has been able to maintain almost 24-hour coverage with its three canine units: Ambush, Havoc and Ransom.
“Canines are really invaluable,” Goodhue County Sheriff Scott McNurlin said. “They can do things that we as human beings really aren’t capable of.
“They really save officers lives. Their senses are keener than ours,” McNurlin said. “Their ability to go into a building and clear it is really more efficient than what five deputies could do. For their cost, they’d be a hard thing to replace.”
While Bowron and Ambush are still getting acquainted with the community through demonstration visits, Chopper is transitioning into the family pet of Goodhue County investigator Colin Boxland, his long-time handler.
“It feels like I’m forgetting something,” Boxland said of going to work without Chopper.
McNurlin added: “It’s kind of like losing your partner.”
Chopper isn’t allowed inside to play with Boxland’s other dogs. “He’s like a bull in a china shop, Boxland said.
Bowron has noticed similar tendencies from the dog he affectionately calls “the furry idiot in my back seat.”
Ambush was selected from the Vohne Liche Kennels in Indiana featured on the popular reality show “Alpha Dogs.” He displays extremely protective tendencies. However, Ambush has also been wildly popular among local citizens, and will soon be added to the trading cards dispersed by McNurlin’s deputies.
“He’s met more people in his career on the road than I have at this point,” Bowron said. “People just come out of the woodwork to meet him. It’s awesome.
K-9 Deputy Jason Denham was on duty with his K-9 partner “Sjors” when they were involved in a major vehicle accident. Deputy Denham was life flighted from the scene to Houston’s Memorial Hermann Hospital. Deputy Denham was in critical condition with severe injuries. Deputy Denham’s K -9 partner was also injured in the vehicle accident and transported to a local veterinary Hospital.
Deputy Jason Denham has been employed with the Harris County Sheriff’s Department for over 10 years. Deputy Denham has been partnered with his partner “Sjors” for over 2 years. Deputy Denham has been married for over 15 years and is the father of three daughters.
Deputy Denham is still on critical condition and is expected to make a complete recovery. Due to the extensive injuries sustained from the accident his injuries will require a long term recovery.
This fund raiser will be used to help offset his medical expenses and assist his family during his recovery process. Any donations will be greatly appreciated and Deputy Denham and his family are grateful for your support.
Thank you for your support – See more at: http://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/k-9-deputy-denham-fundraiser-/128859#sthash.5vkealkC.dpuf
Hear what Carolyn Cambpell from All News 92 FM had to say about K9s4COPs’ appearance at the Rose Parade!
THIS YEAR’S TOURNAMENT OF ROSES PARADE WILL MEAN A LOT TO CANINE PATROLS AND HOUSTONIANS. K-9’S FOR COPS WILL BE FEATURED ON ONE OF THE PARADE FLOATS. HERE’S THE BACK STORY ON THE ONE-OF-A-KIND LOCAL NON-PROFIT.
IF YOU WATCHED THIS YEAR’S TOURNAMENT OF ROSES PARADE, YOU MIGHT HAVE SEEN A BIT OF HOUSTON REPRESENTED. LOCAL NON-PROFIT, K-9’S FOR COPS, WAS FEATURED ON ONE OF THE FLOATS. MORE ABOUT HOW THE IMPRESSIVE ORGANIZATION GOT STARTED.
The owner of Christopher’s Creations in Middlesboro, Kentucky volunteered to help decorate floats in the Rose Bowl Parade.
New Year’s Day is a big football day with a lot of Bowl Games. One of them is the Rose Bowl.
Festivities started Wednesday morning with the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena.
Sometimes it is tough to see on TV, but all of those individual flowers on the floats are fresh; no artificial flowers or plants allowed.
A designer in Kentucky talked with us before he left for California to help with the Rose Parade floats.
His name is Christopher Branham.
Eight years ago he saw what was then an empty storefront.
“I was driving down through Middlesboro and saw a store and thought I would just open up a flower shop. No experience or nothing so I am pretty much self taught,” Christopher Branham said. “I started out with flowers and just designing and started looking at magazines to teach myself how to do it.”
A friend of his in the East Tennessee Professional Florist Association invited him to volunteer to help with the floats in the Tournament of Roses Parade.
“I never thought I would be there doing it. This is very exciting for me,” Christopher said.
“He’s not told me a whole lot. He’s just told me wear comfortable shoes, comfortable clothes, and let’s work hard. “A lot of work. I see a lot of work ahead,” he said. “I’m going to take my work tools and show up.”
He’s been hard at work in Pasadena for almost a week. Photos show what he’s been doing on the float called “K9s 4 Cops.” It features a giant dog. From Pasadena, he said the experience has been wonderful. He is amazed that the floats are made of all natural, live plants and each one is carefully placed in its own water pick or water tube. One of his responsibilities was creating big white flowers filled with roses.
Something he anticipated correctly? Long hours.
“Very long hours from like 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. every night and then I guess on New Year’s Eve I guess until we’re done,” he said.
They finished in time! And Christopher Branham accomplished what he said he wanted to.
“I’m sure I’m going to learn more. That’s the whole thing about floral is learning more and teaching more and being more educated,” he said.
HOUSTON – Representing Houston in a larger-than-life way, the non-profit organization K9s4COPs made their national debut Wednesday morning at the 125th Annual Tournament of Roses Parade.
“Working together to save our communities is the well-chosen theme of this non-profit foundation: K9s4COPs,” said NBC’s Al Roker, as he introduced the foundation.
The non-profit organization is one of 46 floats at this year’s Rose Parade. “It isn’t just apply, it is an invitation to participate,” explained Liz Lara Carreno, Executive Director of K9s4COPs. “We were thrilled; a little frightened, but thrilled.”
K9s4COPs raises money to train police dogs, then helps place them with police departments and schools across the country. They have sent out close to 60 dogs in two and a half years.
The founder of K9s4COPs says this moment before millions is humbling.
“To be such a young organization, two and a half years old, and accomplish this much and get this kind of recognition is unbelievable,” expressed Kristi Schiller, K9s4COPs Founder and Board Chair.
K9s4COPs was Schiller’s vision after she heard about an deputy losing his four-legged partner trying to stop criminals.
“Three years ago, Dec. 22, 2009, I lost partner in the line of duty chasing some burglary suspects,” said Deputy Ted Dahlin of the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office. “I made him a promise that I’d make things right. I never imaged something like this could come from that.”
The float spanned 55 feet and was covered up by organic materials like shaved coconut and corn husks.
At the helm, the organization’s mascot dog, Johnny Cash, standing at 22 feet high.
The real canine version of Johnny Cash took some time out from the parade preparations for a photo-op with some new, little fans.
The group got up at 3:30 a.m. and had to be on the float by 8 a.m. They had to be buckled into the float when they got there.
After four hours of waving, walking and riding along the 5.5 mile route at 2mph, the K9s4COPs group were happy their goal of being in the parade came true.
“It’s been an emotional week for Liz and myself and our core officers who have been with us since the beginning because the theme today is Dreams Do Come True, and it’s true if you work enough they do,” said Schiller.
The organization has raised nearly $2 million that have paid off in a big way.
Recently, one of their dogs helped take more than $6 million worth of drugs off the streets in Harris County.
PASADENA, CA – If you watched the annual Rose Parade today, you might have noticed a float with a big, brown dog.
That float is the K9s4COPS float, a non-profit organization based out of Houston that raises money to buy police dogs for agencies all over the country.
This is the first time K9s4COPS is in the parade and they’re the only Texas organization in the parade this year as well.
K9s4COPS is only two years old and wants to help as many agencies get dogs as they can, but to do that they need more people to know about the organization and with one million people in attendance at the parade and another 100 million watching on TV, the parade is a great way to get the word out about what they do.
“There is a need for this worldwide. The number one bust we’ve had is six and a half million dollars by one dog in one stop and so it’s keeping our streets safe, officers safe, children and schools safe, we feel really, really good about it,” said K9s4COPS founder Kristi Schiller.
The float has to be covered with all organic materials, some K9s4COPS used include kelt, seaweed, and sesame seeds.
Since its inception, K9s4COPS has given close to 60 dogs to agencies in need across the U.S.
Los Angeles television station KTLA – Channel 5 captured this great image of the K9s4Cops float as it made it made it’s way down the main street: Real police dogs accompany the #RoseParade float representing the charity K9s4Cops.org
K9s4Cops, founded in 2010, is a non-profit organization whose mission is to ensure that every law enforcement officer who is in need of a K9 has one at their side and ready for action….much like the goal of The Ben Roethlisberger Foundation!
When the agency was awarded a grant during that NFL season, k9s4Cops tweeted a “Thank You” to Ben, telling their followers that “our next crime fighting K9 ‘Big Ben’ will proudly wear the #7 on his collar!!”.
K9s4Cops has also given Ben’s website some great portrait-style and action photos to use when posting foundation grant news!
Congratulations to K9s4Cops for having the best looking float at the parade!
“A ‘BIG DOG’ WILL REPRESENT HOUSTON IN THE ROSE PARADE”
Watch the video: http://www.khou.com/news/local/A-Big-Dog-Will-Represent-Houston-in-Rose-Bowl-Parade-237694621.html
by Sherry Williams / KHOU 11 News
December 27, 2013 at 10:49 PM
HOUSTON — There will be a big dog in this year’s Rose Bowl Parade. It will be 22 feet tall and is part of the K9′S 4 COPS float. The organization is based in Houston.
They won a coveted spot in the big parade after applying the first time.
“We didn’t realize this initially but once you’re picked you have a float for life if you choose to keep it,” said Jenna Jackson, the Director of Communications for K9′S 4COPS.
K9′S 4 COPS is the only group from Texas to have a float in the parade. The organization was founded just three years ago.
It began after a Houston woman saw a story on the news about a Harris County Precinct 4 K-9 named Blek that cornered a suspect in the woods.
“The dog ran off looking for the suspect and the suspect ended up actually choking K-9 Blek,” said Melanie Orth, Operations Manager of K9′S 4 COPS.
Watching the story, Kristi Schiller was determined to do something.
“I tried to give a dog. It wasn’t that easy to replace one and hence, K9′s 4 COPS was born,” she said.
The group pays for specialized dogs to be brought in from Europe to protect and serve in America.
“In that short time we’ve given over 50 dogs to schools and law enforcement agencies across the country,” Jackson said.
“I made (Blek) a promise that I would make things right,” said Harris County Precinct 4 Deputy Ted Dahlin who had the dog as his K9 partner. “Never imagined that something like this would come from that,” he said, referring to the founding of K9′S 4 COPS and now its presence in the prestigious Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year’s Day.
As an added bonus the float will include nine real dogs which amounts to some pretty good extra security along the parade route in Pasadena, California.
For more information on the organization visit: k9s4cops.org
AN ARTIST WORKS ON A FLOAT AT FIESTA PARADE FLOATS IN IRWINDALE, CALIFORNIA.
Artist Jacque Jiuffare decorates a large German Shepherd police dog figure with buffalo grass, on the K9s4COP’s float themed “Working Together for Safer Communities” at Fiesta Parade Floats in Irwindale, California December 28, 2013. The float will be entered in the 125th Rose Parade, which will take place on January 1, 2014, in Pasadena, California. REUTERS/Kevork Djansezian (UNITED STATES – Tags: SOCIETY ANNIVERSARY)