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RIP Buster: Courageous and heroic police dog loses his life

Buster the Northumbria police dog dies
© Northumbria Police - Facebook

A heroic former police dog, who found two murder suspects and a missing girl during his working life, has died at 15 years of age.

By Alice Lang Published on 21 May 2019

Buster, a courageous police dog, served in Northumbria Police from just eight weeks old until his retirement. Of his litter, he was the only one to pass his police training - yep, he was a seriously clever little pooch!

Buster was an incredible police pooch

During his time as a police dog, the smart pup tracked down notorious criminals, searched for and found numerous vulnerable people, sniffed out vital police evidence and even chased down a burglar. And who could ever be forgotten with a legacy like that?

Speaking to ITV News, Buster’s handler, Dave Heywood, said: “He had a good nose and most of his work was finding missing people and stolen goods but on his very last shift he did manage to trace two murder suspects. I took him to a derby when he was just a pup and he was trying to have a go then, it didn’t faze him, and that is the kind of dog he was.”

When he retired in 2019, he lived with his police handler and family - after all, who on earth could let go of this incredible canine?

But now, he’s sadly passed away

Sadly, after an incredible career and a happy retirement, Buster has lost his life at the ripe age of 15 years old.

“Buster was a very courageous and determined dog and I think that is what kept him going so long. He was loyal and loving his whole life and was always willing to have a go and to protect me from danger. Even at the last, when he was about to be put down, he had a go at the vet because he wanted to protect me.

It is very tough to lose him as he is the only dog I have had since they were just a baby, the others have always been donated to me.

It never gets any easier but it has been particularly hard with him. He was a one man dog and I was the only one who could handle him and he stuck with me right to the end.”

We want to say a huge thank you to Buster for his incredible service to his country. He'll certainly never be fogotten! Our thoughts are with Dave and his family during this tough time.

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