Canines working with the Connecticut Department of Correction (DOC) will now be a little safer on the job thanks to a donation from a Massachusetts non-profit.
East Taunton, Mass.-based Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. recently donated nine bullet- and stab-protective vests to the DOC’s K9 Unit, which operates three kennels across the state, including one in Enfield.
Dogs from the kennels, according to DOC Public Information Officer Andrius Banevicius, work at all of the state’s correctional institutions.
Locally, the state operates three prisons in Enfield, two in Somers and one in Suffield.
According to Beneficius, the DOC’s K9 units have not previously used protection vests, and they will help prevent injuries while working in institutions throughout the state.
“The vests will provide protection from potential life-threatening injuries for the DOC’s K9s as they help maintain security and search for contraband within the state’s prison system,” the DOC said in a statement Thursday, adding that the units also assist local and state police with missing-person searches.
Established in 2009, Vested Interest has provided vests to more than 400 law enforcement dogs, amounting to more than $400,000 in donated equipment.
Each vest costs $950.