Police dog Blue retires after illustrious career chasing suspects and locating vulnerable people
PUBLISHED: 13:31 29 November 2017 | UPDATED: 13:41 29 November 2017
A hard-working police dog who made national headlines for his incredible sense of smell has retired from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Dog Unit this week.
German Shepherd Blue, who is eight years old, originally came from London and began his career with his handler in 2009.
Blue and his handler were predominantly based in East Herts, prior to the Dog Units of Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire collaborating.
PD Blue worked alongside drugs, cash and weapons detection Labrador PD Berty and is well known across the three counties.
He has regularly featured in the media and has a large fan base on the unit’s social media accounts.
In July this year Blue was formally honoured for his ‘exceptional work’ after he received a PDSA Commendation for the role he played locating a collapsed man in Croxley Green in December, 2016.
Also in July, a Letchworth Garden City man was sent to prison for two years after he was tracked for two miles by Blue following an incident in Baldock.
Blue led his handler through thick bushes and across knee-deep streams, over fences and fields and down lanes and into wooded areas before finding the man near Stotfold.
Body-worn camera footage was released of the track, which made national headlines.
Two other men were sentenced in March, 2016 for their role in a burglary in Stevenage after Blue tracked them for around three miles.
Not only did Blue find the men hidden behind wheelie bins, he also located items believed to be from the property and clothing belonging to the offenders.
Last month (October) Blue once again made headlines when he was able to provide vital assistance in Friday Bridge, finding a vulnerable teenager who had been reported missing.
Back in January 2015 Blue found another missing person who was last seen in a densely wooded area in Hertford.
Despite the incredibly harsh terrain and lack of light, Blue found the man within minutes.
He was in a critical condition, but thankfully officers were able to stabilise him until ambulance and fire crews reached the isolated location.
In the same year (2015), Blue was in action in Shenley and Teversham where arrests were made after his super nose was deployed to locate suspects in two theft cases.
Blue was also used in Welwyn Garden City after a robbery.
His nose once again led officers to two suspects.
July 2015 saw Blue and his handler called to Clifton where they found a missing man less than half an hour after the initial call.
Several days earlier Blue had been in Sawbridgeworth where two people were tracked and detained within ten minutes following a suspicious incident.
“It has been my absolute honour and privilege to work with PD Blue,” said the German Shepherd’s handler.
“He licensed on his first birthday and he has been working hard ever since.”
Blue is being rehomed as a pet for a family in Surrey.
His handler explained: “It is incredibly distressing for me to give Blue up after being together for eight years, but I would be selfish to keep him as, with my new dog and working commitments, I would not be able to give him the time and attention he needs.
“I know he’ll be far happier in his new home and it’s better for him to be in an environment where he can just relax and enjoy his retirement.”
Head of the BCH Dog Unit, Inspector Iain Clark, said: “Blue has been an incredible asset to our team, officers across the three counties and to the public he helped serve.
“Not only has Blue helped catch many suspects over the years, with some fantastic court results, he has also saved lives.
“He is an absolute credit to his handler and I hope he will now enjoy a well-earned relaxing and healthy retirement.”
Don’t forget you can follow the BCH Dog Unit on Twitter (www.twitter.com/BCHPoliceDogs) and like them on Facebook: www.facebook.com/BCHPoliceDogs.