Police Dog Baloo, a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois, recently accompanied her handler when he was deployed to an incident. Sadly she was struck by a vehicle leaving the scene and was left with career-ending injuries.
Baloo has been a valued member of the Essex Police since March of last year. She both worked and lived with her handler, PC Ross Ashcroft and, while they were attending a motor vehicle incident, she was hit by a car and brought into Dick White Referrals with severe injuries to 3 of her legs.
Surgeon Jan Janovec and the Theatre Team undertook the first surgical procedures on Baloo’s hind legs. She had fractures to both the left hip and the right side of the pelvis.
With these repaired, the plan was to operate on the right front limb 2 days later. However, it became obvious that the multiple injuries sustained to the paw of this leg were so severe that the blood supply to the limb could not be restored and, therefore, the only option was amputation.
After a few days under 24 hour nursing supervision at the clinic, Baloo returned to her grateful handler. He said “Baloo is a very special dog and I would love to keep her at home with me. However once I had my new police dog I would be unable to give her the time, love and attention she deserves Therefore we needed to find a suitable home for her to recuperate and enjoy her retirement”.
Dogs adapt very well to functioning with just 3 legs and it is anticipated that, although her career has had to end, following a course of physiotherapy over the next few weeks, she will be able to live happily as a normal pet.
Essex Police publicised the search for a suitable home for Baloo and received around 670 emails from across the UK and even as far away as Australia, expressing an interest.
Ross was spoilt for choice when finding her a loving home but, in the end, Baloo has gone to Mandy, an Essex Police volunteer and retired police dog handler of 24 years. Baloo moved to her new home on 27th December. He is still close enough for Ross to visit regularly and monitor Baloo’s progress.
Anyone interested can also see how Baloo is settling in by following her on Twitter (@PBaloo) and Instagram (@RPDBaloo) Mandy will be taking Baloo to fundraising events with the Essex Retired Police Dogs Fund to raise awareness about the charity, which sets out to help retired police dogs.