WYOMING, Michigan – A West Michigan-based dog training company recently donated a K9 to the Wyoming Department of Public Safety as part of work it does through its nonprofit arm, the WMK9 Foundation.
West Michigan K9 was founded by Stephen Parent in 2013 to train dogs for all areas – with a particular focus on law enforcement and military dog training.
About two years ago they were able to expand their work by setting up the WMK9 Foundation with the aim of donating dogs to those in need who could not necessarily afford them.
They donated their tenth K9 that year to the Wyoming Department of Public Safety.
“We spend a lot of money buying green canines for our program, so we have someone willing to donate something like that. It’s huge, ”said Adam Sherman, the dog handler.
Sherman has already started working with Max, the one and a half year old German Shepherd, who was donated by WMK9.
They have about two weeks of training before they are certified to work on the streets of Wyoming to work as a team.
“Today there were three weeks of training, but he’s been with me for a little more than a month and a half. We’re doing a two-week phase that connects, he can live on the couch and be the puppy.” it’s in the house and it’s fun, ”Sherman explained.
Max will take on his new role as a police dog after another K9 officer retires in Wyoming.
Parents found out about retirement about 2 weeks ago and quickly contacted the department to see if they would be interested in a donated dog.
“Our philosophy is that these dogs can really bridge the gap between communities and law enforcement,” he said.
Wyoming DPS has its own in-house training system for K9 officers, but Max had been training K9 for several weeks at West Michigan’s West Olive facility.
Parent says they’ll typically spend hundreds of hours training dogs when they’re going through their full routine.
You can find more information about their training offerings on their website.
The WMK9 Foundation is currently raising funds so they can continue to donate dogs to law enforcement agencies and veterans who need them. You can donate or volunteer your time on their website.