Whether it’s chasing down a fleeing suspect, sniffing out illegal drugs in a stopped vehicle or obeying the every command of their handler, K-9 dogs work hard every shift.
Max, a Belgian Malinois, has been with the Gaithersburg Police Department (GPD) for more than eight years, serving as a trained police patrol dog with the ability to detect drugs in unseen places. Max remains a critical member of the department, but in dog years he is approaching his golden years. “There has not yet been a date set for his retirement, though it’s expected that he will retire no later than next spring, but more likely this fall,” said GPD Officer Dan Lane.
Due to the high amount of training each K-9 must receive, Max’s replacement will cost thousands of dollars. As a way to help the department, the Gaithersburg Police Foundation is raising funds this year to pay for his replacement. Over the next month, the foundation has two fundraisers set.
The first will take place May 17 at Dogfish Head Alehouse at 800 W. Diamond Ave. Between 11 a.m. and 11 p.m., the venue will donate 15 percent of the day’s proceeds to the foundation. Several members of the non-profit and the department will be at the restaurant throughout the day to talk to people who come in for a bite to eat or a cold drink.
Chris O’Brien, foundation chairperson, said the foundation will be hosting a raffle for several prizes including a television and a $50 Dogfish gift certificate. The eighth consecutive year for this fundraiser, it is the foundation’s most popular.
PetSmart in the Kentlands will also be hosting a fundraiser for the foundation on June 4. “It’s a good opportunity for dog lovers to support the program,” O’Brien said.