DAVENPORT-- The Davenport Police Department is getting their K-9 unit ready to combat tougher drugs they might find in the streets.
Growing concerns of narcotics laced with fentanyl has moved the department to require every officer on the K-9 unit to carry their own kit with the overdose reversal drug naloxone.
"They are cutting the heroin with the fentanyl. The fentanyl is probably 50-100 times more powerful as an opiate than the heroin is," says K-9 Unit Supervisor, Sergeant James Garrard.
All three teams om the dog unit will now carry at least two doses of naloxone at all times.
The Department held a training session to show officers how to administer the drug and the signs to look for if their dog overdoses while on the job.
“ If a human.... sees some dust that that may be indicative of that narcotic, they’re going to probably avoid it, use protective gear.... if it’s a dog that comes in, it doesn’t do that, they just sniff everything,” says Garrard.
The supply of naloxone cost the department around $244, a small price to pay, Sergeant Garrard says to give their working dogs the extra protection they need.
On top of the medicine on hand, dog handlers are now required to spend an extra 15 minutes monitoring their K-9 partners after every time the dogs are put to work.
"There's no more going and doing a sniff putting the dog away and going to do some other work," says Garrard.
According to police, there has been no reports of accidental dog overdoses with in the department.