Bubba’s BTLS Foundation to give gear for police dogs
Like all police, a K9 unit needs proper equipment to do the dangerous work of protecting and serving. To that end, Bubba the Love Sponge’s BTLS Foundation is committed to purchasing ballistic vests for the K9 Unit of the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.
The vests–custom-made by Canine Tactical of Iowa–will cost about $14,000 to outfit the nine dogs of the MSCO K9 unit. In a media release, Sheriff Rick Wells said: “the MSCO K9 Unit will be better equipped for the dangerous service they provide each day.”
The BTLS Foundation was founded by Bubba The Love Sponge Clem in 2008 to support a variety of causes through charity work and donations. In particular, the BTLS Foundation has given a lot of support to local sheriff’s offices in the past. Clem has a fondness for the office of sheriff, having run himself to be sheriff of Pinellas County in 2004.
There is no accepted total for how many total police dogs are in service in the United States today. Dogs are used for a wide variety of actions in police work on just about every level of law enforcement.
Sadly, police dogs are not safe from danger. According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, 40 dogs have been killed in the line of duty as police dogs in Florida alone. Heat exhaustion and drowning are among the main causes, but K9 units, especially patrol dogs like the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office unit, can end up attacked by desperate criminals looking to escape the law. Ballistic vests like those made by Canine Tactical keep the dogs safer while they do work that keeps the people safer. The vests are bulletproof and slashproof, and fit the dogs not entirely unlike a harness many people use for their own pets.