The Valley Retired Police Police Dog Association (VRPDA) was established in 1999 to help financially support police canines once they retire. The Mission of VRPDA is to ensure that the retired K9s receive the medical care they need and deserve after years of service performing physically demanding work.
Recently VRPDA shared the story of retired K9 Sabre out of Black Diamond on their Facebook page. “Black Diamond Police Department’s Officer Chatterson worked with his narcotics detection K9, Sabre, from January 2006 through December 2012. Sabre lost his vision a few months ago and was completely blind due to diabetic cataracts. The vet informed Officer Chatterson that Sabre could undergo surgery that would probably restore his vision, but the surgery was very expensive.”
It was due to the generous donations of VRPDA supporters that the association was able to cover the cost of the surgery for Sabre. The surgery was a success and Sabre’s vision was returned. Officer Chatterson shared his gratitude in the same VRFDA Facebook post.
“Sabre’s cataract surgery went extremely well. He has spent the last few months of his life without sight. I can’t imagine losing my vision and only seeing darkness. I can’t imagine how helpless he felt thinking that someone turned off the lights and refused to turn them back on. After a few preliminary visits to the vet, it was determined that Sabre was a perfect candidate for cataract surgery. All the tests turned out extremely positive and the surgery was finally performed.”
“Sabre came out of surgery like a Champ,” Chatterson continued, “A true Valley K9! He went from completely blind to having 20/20 vision. You have no idea how emotional I was when my favorite guy actually got excited to see me for the first time in many months. He hasn’t been able to see me in a very long time. He walked out of the back room of the eye clinic after the surgery and our eyes locked on each other. He wagged his tail for the first time in many months and I knew in my heart that he saw me. He actually ran towards me, knocked me down and licked my face! I cried like a baby. I have never experienced this type of joy in my life.
The VRPDA deserves ALL the credit for making this happen. You gave my best friend back his sight. Not only did you give him back his sight, you gave him back his will to live. The best thing I have ever done in my 22-year law enforcement career was becoming a K9 handler. The VRPDA will always hold a special place in my heart. Thank you so very much for giving me back my four-legged explorer. I will forever be in your debt.”
How to Support Valley Retired Police Dog Association
The primary way the VRPDA raises funds is through its annual calendar. Calendars are $10.00 each and can be purchased at participating police departments (Auburn, Black Diamond, Des Moines, Federal Way, Kent, Renton, and Tukwila), and Reber Ranch.
This year the VRPDA has introduced a new way to support the association. New plush police K9’s were introduced in late November and were received with rousing adoration. These 9inch tall plush K9s are perfect for stocking stuffers, or a unique gift for any dog lover. Each dog sells for $15.00, with 100% of proceeds going to the association.
Many departments have sold out of their initial round of supplies, or are down to only one style. If your police department is out, or out of the type of dog you’d like, don’t fret! VRPDA reassured that a restock is coming! The new supply, which will include a new sable style of K9, is expected on Monday.
The Auburn Examiner happened to purchase an extra calendar and K9 and are giving them away in an exclusive subscriber give away this Friday. So if you want a chance at a 2020 Valley Retired Police Dog Calendar and an adorable (Kaiser approved) plush K9, subscribe to the Auburn Examiner news blast!