Attorney general in Daytona Beach highlighting emergency care for K9s legislation

Bill would allow paramedics to provide emergency care to injured police dogs

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Attorney General Ashley Moody and other local leaders were in Daytona Beach Friday pushing legislation to protect police dogs injured in the line of duty.

Whether overworked, attacked or injured, house bill 697 and senate bill 388 aim to get them help, fast.

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“Currently paramedics and EMTs are not specifically permitted to transport our officer K9s,” said Moody.

If passed, the bills would allow EMT’s to transport the dogs to vets and administer care in the meantime. Senator Tom Wright, who is behind that bill, said paramedics already have the training.

“They’re already prepared and the EMS services here in Volusia County, they have the additional muzzle covers that lets you do mouth to mouth,” he said.

K9′s across Florida have a wide range of jobs. The dogs’ handlers who support the bills said it’s much needed for everything the K9s do.

“We get to help look for that missing person. Your missing grandma, grandpa, mom or dad,” said Brand Alley, a corrections deputy and handler with Brevard County Sheriff’s Office.

Alley’s K9, Titan, is on call, ready to go 24/7 as a search and scent dog.

“We can be tracking in the woods for miles and miles, the dogs can get dehydrated,” Alley said.

Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood said this could have possibly made a difference in the case of K9 Forest who was caught in gunfire and killed in 2016. He said it’s another step to protect those dogs after another K9 law that was passed in 2019.

Fang’s law was signed into effect by Governor Desantis, upgrading if you kill a police animal, a police dog, it goes from a felony of the third degree to a felony of the second degree,” he said.

The Senate bill passed committees on Thursday and will be heard on the Senate floor next week. The House bill portion had its first reading on Wednesday.

If it passes, the bill would take effect on July 1.

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