A dog memorial and cemetery have been set up for sniffer dogs in Kerala Police which were inaugurated by DGP and State Police Chief Loknath Behera on June 20, Saturday. DGP Behera offered floral tributes at the tombs of the service dogs and unveiled the memorial structure that is constructed at the Kerala Police Academy campus in Thrissur. The facility is dedicated to the department’s retired dogs and is said to be the first of its kinds in Asia, according to senior police officials, reports The Hindu.
The newly-built memorial site was proposed by Kerala police to provide a dignified space for burial ceremonies and memory of dog officers who passed away while serving the people. A total of 10 tombs have been built at the site to allow multiple burials in the same pit on a rotation basis and these are arranged in a circular manner with a table built in the centre for placing the body during the funeral ceremony. Each tomb is covered with granite stone slabs with a teak wood board for engraving the dog’s name who will lay to rest there and one cypress tree has been planted at every tomb’s head. The project cost around 10 lakh and was built in a ten cents plot.
The structure is built near ‘Vishranthi’, the retirement and rehabilitation home for K9 Squad dogs, built at the police academy where they are taken care of till their death. It was also developed under the initiative of DGP Behera in 2019 and has many facilities including a recreational activities room for dogs to play and watch television, a garden and a swimming pool. As per the media outlet, there are a total of 19 dogs in the retirement home currently that is being tended to by a proper medical staff and veterinary doctors. They are prescribed a balanced diet by the doctors according to their weight and height. The centre also documents their services, contribution and sacrifices for the force.
According to the Kerala Police official website, K9 squads have been part of the task force for over 60 years that were started in Thiruvananthapuram with three Alsatian dogs. Currently, they have 82 dogs out of which half are sniffer while other half is tracker dogs.
Keywords- Kerala Police Academy, Thrissur, Dog cemetery and memorial, Asia, retired Dogs, Vishranthi, tombs, tribute,K9 squad