Retirement. It is a thought that generally triggers images of relaxation and time with loved ones. For K-9 police working dogs, it can take more to ensure that a happy retirement is in store.

Police dogs are trained for a very specific role. These roles can put them in harm’s way. Their jobs can be physically challenging. These highly trained K-9s perform a range of difficult and sometimes dangerous tasks in the line of duty. Isenberg & Hewitt’s managing partner, Melvin Hewitt,  agreed…actually asked to see what it was like to be apprehended by a police K-9. The experience gave him an appreciation of the intensity of the work done by police dogs.

As a result of their work, police K-9s can suffer injuries that require a lifetime of additional medical care. Others simply retire after years of service.  Who pays for that care?

In many cases, the K-9 officer is allowed to adopt his K-9 partner, but all too often the police department is unable to continue to provide for the ongoing care that retired K-9 need. This can create a heavy burden on the adopting officer.

Nonprofit helps with financial needs of retired police dogs

To help better provide for the financial obstacles these dogs incur after retirement, Isenberg & Hewitt’s managing partner, Melvin Hewitt, started BARKS (Benefits Assisting Retired K-9s) a 501(c)(3) created to help supplement the costs of medical care for the retired K-9. In addition BARKS works closely with a number of local veterinarians who support its mission.