Drug sniffing dog overdoses

October 27, 2009 1:18:14 PM PDT
Hooked to an IV and monitoring devices Ventura County Police Department canine, Balu, is recuperating after quite a scare.

The 4-year-old German Sheppard ingested a toxic amount of methamphetamine in a late night drug search.

"When the canine, Balu, and I went to search for the second baggie there was still remnants of the methamphetamine on the ground and canine, Balu, uh I commanded him to search for illegal narcotics he did his job he searched the area where the suspect was last seen to have dropped the baggie and he alerted and gave me a positive alert to illegal narcotics."

Hours later when wrapping up the day, Senior Deputy Dean Worthy realized his partner was in trouble.

"He had a full blown grand maul seizure and started violently thrashing and doing barrel rolls in the backseat of the car where he stays. I tried to help him out and control his head but he was uncontrollable he was violently thrashing for about 2 and a half minutes."

The two, partners for 3 years, know the job comes with risk.

"To avoid something like this the handler stays in close proximity to the dog. If the handler observes something that might be a threat to the dog, in this situation I didn't see it. It was dark out. I didn't see the methamphetamine it was real small debris on the ground. He picked it up; he didn't see it he went to it with his nose which is what he's trained to do."

Now a new journey for the two the road to recovery, tough for both.

"We do develop a real close bond with these dogs. And the reason I'm here is because if I leave he gets separation anxiety and he started pulling out his IV's and everything so as you saw in there there's a bed for me and a bed for him so I've been here since 3 in the morning."


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