Atascadero Police Department’s K9s receive body armor
Nonprofit provides lifesaving armor for four-legged officers
–Atascadero Police K9s Atza and Pit are the proud new recipients of bullet and stab protective vests, thanks to a charitable donation from Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. The vests were generously sponsored by the Hausman Family Foundation of California.
Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. is a non-profit 501c(3) charity located in East Taunton, Massachusetts, whose mission is to provide bullet and stab protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States. The group was established in 2009 to assist law enforcement agencies with this potentially lifesaving body armor for their four-legged K9 officers.
Since its inception, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. has provided over 1,700 protective vests, in 49 states, through private and corporate donations, at a cost of over 1.6 million dollars. All vests are custom made in the USA by Armor Express in Central Lake, Michigan. The donation amount needed to provide one protective K9 vest is $1,050. Each vest has a five-year warranty and weighs an average of 4 to 5 lbs.
The program is open to dogs actively employed in the U.S. with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K9 graduates, as well as K9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate. It’s estimated that there are approximately 30,000 active law enforcement K9s throughout the United States.
For more information or to learn about volunteer opportunities, call (508) 824-6978. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provides information, lists events, and accepts tax-deductible donations of any denomination at www.vik9s.org or mailed to P.O. Box 9 East Taunton, MA 02718. For further information call the Atascadero Police Department, Officer C. Hester at (805) 461-5051.