The Gist: A day of routine training ended in tragedy when K9 Chase, a police dog from Cobb County, was found unresponsive due to a heat-related incident at Allatoona High School.
What Happened?: The officers were participating in active shooter training at the high school on Monday, June 5, just after 2 p.m. when K9 Officer Neill found Chase unresponsive in his patrol vehicle. According to police, a vehicle air conditioning system failure, coupled with a malfunction of other safety systems, led to a rapid temperature increase inside the vehicle.
By The Numbers:
- The officers had been attending training since 11 a.m.
- K9 partners were checked on the hour for 15-minute breaks during each 45-minute training session.
- Despite immediate life-saving attempts by Officer Neill, fellow officers, and local fire personnel, K9 Chase could not be saved.
Why It Matters: The loss of K9 Chase shines a spotlight on the potentially fatal risk of heat exposure for animals, even in controlled circumstances. It also raises questions about the safety measures in place for K9 officers.
What’s Next?: Cobb County investigators are piecing together how this tragic incident occurred, focusing on the vehicle’s system failures. The body of K9 Chase is at the Cobb County Animal Shelter and will be moved to the University of Georgia for a necropsy later today.
The results of this post-mortem examination could provide more information on the circumstances leading to the dog’s death.