Kennel Clubs Donate $11,000 for Hillsborough’s K-9 Program

Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017
Kennel Clubs Donate $11,000 for Hillsborough’s K-9 Program
Mayor Tom Stevens and Police Chief Duane Hampton accept a donation from the Durham and American kennel clubs. Presenting the check is Durham Kennel Club Member Joyce McHenry with Director Bob Wisniewski beside her. Also pictured are Linda Wozniak, delegate to the parent club, and Cpl. Scott Foster.

The Hillsborough Police Department has received a donation of $11,000 for the purchase of a new police dog from the Durham Kennel Club and its parent organization, the American Kennel Club.

Representatives of the local club visited the main station Nov. 18 and presented a check to Police Chief Duane Hampton and Mayor Tom Stevens. The representatives are Director Bob Wisniewski, Member Joyce McHenry, and Linda Wozniak, delegate to the parent club.

“We are very proud of our K-9 program, and this generous support from the Durham Kennel Club and the American Kennel Club will help us continue it and make it stronger,” Hampton said.

The donation — $6,000 from the Durham Kennel Club with a $5,000 match from the parent club — is provided through the American Kennel Club’s Canine Support and Relief Fund, which helps to replace service dogs, including police K-9s. Replacement and accompanying training of a police dog typically costs over $10,000.

As a condition of the grant, the Police Department will add a small decal displaying the club’s Reunite logo to the town’s K-9 vehicles. The AKC Reunite program supports implanting microchips in pets for the recovery of lost pets. It includes microchips, collar tags and around-the-clock recovery experts and has helped reunite over 400,000 lost pets with owners since 1995.

Although the presentation of the grant follows the recent retirement of K-9 Officer Viper, the donation has been discussed since March, when representatives of the local club approached Cpl. Scott Foster with the idea. Foster is the handler for K-9 Officer Vader and worked out the grant’s details.

“Hillsborough so appreciates our police department and loves our K-9s,” the mayor said. “We are so fortunate to have this wonderful support from the kennel clubs just as K-9 Viper is retiring. The donation does make a big difference.”

Hillsborough’s K9 officers are dual-purpose patrol dogs. In addition to protecting their partners and apprehending suspects, they are able to locate narcotics, track people, perform building searches and locate items, such as discarded weapons. Police dogs usually retire between 6 and 10 years of age. Vader, who started work with the town in 2014, is 5 years old. Viper, who retired officially on Nov. 13, is 8. See the news release on Viper’s retirement.