Pennsylvania Township Suing Nebraska Police Dog Supplier

 |  Nov 25th 2006  |   0 Contributions

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Warminster Township suing police dog supplier
Associated Press

WARMINSTER, Pa. - A suburban Philadelphia township is suing a Nebraska-based dog supplier, alleging that it provided them with unhealthy police dogs.

Warminster Township officials say three German shepherds recently hired by the police force did not get a clean bill of health from veterinarians who examined them. After police returned them to the provider, officials said, they got another unhealthy one in return.

The township is suing Lincoln, Neb.-based Kiewel Working Dogs International, saying it violated its warranty. The township is seeking more than $22,700 in damages to cover costs related to the unhealthy dogs; officials are also seeking $68.02 per day for the care of the last unhealthy dog.

Messages left with Kiewel Working Dogs by The Intelligencer of Doylestown last week were not returned. A message left by The Associated Press on Sunday was not immediately returned.

Police Chief Michael Murphy said the dogs appear to be well-trained, but that they simply weren't healthy.

"But their health was awful," he said. "We're looking for these dogs to be serviceable for eight to 10 years and there's no way these dogs would have been serviceable for even close to that. This most recent dog, he wouldn't have been able to work from the get-go."

The department's K-9 unit had four dogs earlier this year, but three had to be retired over the summer for health reasons. Murphy said he contacted the department's usual supplier, but the kennel didn't have any dogs available at the time.

After several trainers recommended Kiewel Working Dogs, Murphy called the owner, David Kiewel. The police paid Kiewel nearly $14,600 for the three German shepherds in August and had them examined in September by veterinarians, officials said.

But the veterinarians said one dog had a ligament injury and another had "an area of concern in his front elbow joints."

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