Robinson Police Department K9 Officer Dex was gifted with a new garment recently, as he received body armor donated from a non-profit organization.
According to a Facebook post posted by Sgt. Dan Strauch, the bullet and stab protective vest was donated from Vested Interest in K9's Inc. The organization based in Massachusetts provides vests, made in the United States, to police dogs throughout the country.
They are currently partnered with a vest manufacturer, who creates a vest for one K9 after the organization receives a $950 donation for their cause.
If purchased by the department independently each vest would cost between $1,795-$2,234. All vests have a five-year warranty.
Dex has the honor of wearing the vest of retired K9 Kilo, who was a member of the Seekonck, Mass. Police Department. Kilo retired from the force before passing away in 2018. His name is memorialized on the vest.
Chief Chad Weaver said that Dex is the first K9 to wear to wear a body armor vest in city history.
Strauch said the organization was founded in 2009 and also provides armor to other law-enforcement related agencies as well.
"Since its inception, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provided over 3,400 protective vests in 50 states, through private and corporate donations, at a value of $5.7 million dollars," Strauch said.
The program is open to dogs actively employed in the U.S. with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K9 graduates, as well as K9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate.
Dex joined the police department in 2017 and is the 4th K9 officer in the department's history. He is handled by Officer Nathaniel Nicklaus.