Officers from a Des Moines-area police department are hitting the streets armed with a new weapon – dogs wearing bullet-proof vests.
The vests are made of Kevlar and weigh about six pounds. They are bullet-proof, stab-proof and help protect the department’s dogs the same way military troops and police officers are protected.
The dogs wear the vests for 15 minutes per day while they become accustomed to the extra weight and fit of the protective gear. Once the dogs are used to the vests, they can be work for up to an hour at a time.
The vests cost about $1,000 apiece. Funding for the Urbandale, Iowa vests comes from Kevlar for K9s, a non-profit group based in Colorado that raises money to purchase the vests for dogs.