After 8 years, 400 arrests and a net haul of £11 million ($16 million), Alfie the springer spaniel sniffer dog has retired from Staffordshire Police.
Alfie was originally donated to the police by a family in Nottinghamshire after they found him to be too hyperactive. Ms Hargreaves, his handler, who has been in the police since she joined the cadets at 16, said: ‘He was way too much for an ordinary family – a bit overzealous and hyperactive – but that’s exactly what we look for in a search dog.
‘He is ball crazy and that’s the first thing we need – a dog who loves the reward of chasing a tennis ball.’
After being assessed by a team of officers, it was clear that he was perfect for the job and Alfie was inducted into the force with eight weeks of training with his handler. She said: ‘I was new to being a specialist dog handler too. Although I’d had a general purpose dog before, Alfie was my first search dog.
‘He’s turned out to be the finest dog the force has ever known.
During his eight years in the force, Alfie has sniffed out £8million in drugs alone, plus cash, guns and ammunition.
‘And Alfie has always been 100 per cent professional – that’s what makes him such a special dog – even when he was doing shift patterns. He did exactly the same hours as me, even when I was working nights or from the early hours of the morning.As soon as I put my uniform on, he was ready to work.’
Alfie retired in October and is being supported by the Staffordshire Retired Police Dogs Scheme now he is no longer in active service. Ms Hargreaves said: ‘Although I was very sad to see him retire I know he’ll enjoy his new home.
‘But I will be fundraising for the Staffordshire Retired Police Dogs Scheme to make sure he has a comfortable retirement.’
Full Story at the Daily Mail