Cpl. Stephen Miller says K-9 Justice is actually a relatively calm partner.
“His personality is awesome. I love it. I don’t have to worry about him biting someone when he’s not supposed to. But if he needs to, he’ll do it. Let’s put it that way,” he said.
But Justice is one of just 4 K-9s with the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office. And the man in charge says that’s not nearly enough.
“There is nothing that replaces a K-9 deputy on the road. They are so valuable to the patrol deputies. It can’t be overstated,” said Sheriff Al Nienhuis.
Citrus County with a smaller population has 8 K-9s and a volunteer bloodhound. While Pasco has a whopping 22 K-9s on the force.
That’s why Nienhuis took to Facebook with a post chiding the county commission for not approving his budget that would have added one more K-9, to give them 5.
“It’s not a desire. It’s a necessity,” he said.
“There’s been several times where we work 20 hour days just because the need of a K-9, so we always have to be available. It’s hard on us. But we try and hold our own the best we can,” said Miller.
We are waiting to hear back from the commissioners about the sheriff’s criticism.
The Sheriff’s Office is appealing to the state government to try and get the funding they say they desperately need.
Here’s the entire post from Sheriff Nienhuis: