GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A K-9 with the Grand Rapids Police Department is retiring after eight years, and a new dog has filled his position.
Atos, a K-9 certified in explosives detection and patrol functions, retired from GRPD on May 28. During his almost decade-long career, Atos and his human partner Sgt. Jeff Dionne did around 200 sweeps of Van Andel arena before events.
According to a release, the K-9 was very friendly and did many community events and demonstrations.
“If you’ve seen one of our K-9s at a neighborhood or school event, it was most likely Atos,” said Sgt. Dionne in the release.
His nickname was “Toasty” after a friend of Sgt. Dionne’s daughter heard Atos’ name (pronounced “Ah-tos”) as “Hot Toast.” Atos will now spend his retirement with the Dionne family as their family pet.
The K-9 will be replaced by newly trained Rip. He is an 18-month-old Belgian Malinois, who will be teamed with Officer Jake Newton. Rip recently passed his certification in narcotics detection and patrol functions and started the job on May 29.
Funding for Rip came from the Grand Rapids Police Foundation, which has a special fund for K-9s and their training, according to a release.