Sheriff's Kick-Ass K-9s Nominated for National Awards

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Boomer, with the help of handler Deputy David Thomas, is kicking ass and taking names.
A couple of extremely hairy, four-legged employees of the Harris County Sheriff's Office have been nominated for a prestigious national award: Canine crimefighters Boomer and Tommy are up for the American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards.

The two black German shepherds are among 15 finalists in the awards' law enforcement/arson category; winners of each category will net $1,500 for their chosen charity, and the overall Hero of the Dog Year winner adds another $5,000 to the charity's pot.

"In almost two years with the Harris County Sheriff's Office, K-9 Boomer has helped take more than $6 million worth of illegal drugs off the streets, and assisted in the arrest of 26 suspects accused in crimes involving narcotics, evading arrest and/or burglary," according to an HCSO press release. "K-9 Tommy, a new addition and rising star on the [HCSO] team, has aided in cornering 36 suspects, found an elderly missing man, and located important evidence in a sexual assault case." (To put this in perspective, our own dog has aided in the cornering of a handful of squirrels and located several small bones that were evidence of a long-ago discarded piece of fried chicken.)

As with all HCSO K-9s, Tommy and Boomer went through a "rigorous 14-week HCSO training course with their handler to learn tracking, scouting, building searches, vehicle stops, and drug or bomb training," according to the press release. "Most law enforcement K-9s are German Shepherds or Belgian Malinois, cost $12,000, and retire after five to eight years of service."

But these two deputy dogs need your help to win -- Harris County residents are encouraged to cast their vote by July 30. Winners of each category will be announced August 6, and the Hero Dog of the Year winner will be announced at the AHA's swanky gala at the Beverly Hills Hilton October 6.

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