• Old police dog vans’ to get new homes
  • Three local charities snap them up for £1 each
  • A ‘compassionate county’ applies to animals as well as people says Police and Crime Commissioner
  • £514.80 raised for retired police dogs charity

Whoever coined the phrase “It’s a dog’s life” could not have been thinking of Gloucestershire’s police dogs who now travel in the latest automotive canine comfort.

The spin-off is that other less privileged pooches will benefit too as three specially adapted vehicles, which no longer meet the Constabulary’s requirements, have been sold to local animal charities for £1 each.

Police and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl, who brokered the deal, said:

“We are not allowed to give them away and they are perfectly roadworthy so offering them to a worthwhile new owner for a nominal fee seemed the best solution.

“Because we have changed from Vauxhalls to Fords, the fittings are no longer transferable so it makes sense for them to go where they can be put to good use.

“All of the priorities in my police and crime plan are aimed at making Gloucestershire a fairer, more just and compassionate place and that extends to our treatment of animals too”. 

The three vans have been MOT’d and valeted and will be handed over to representatives from Gloucester-based Teckels, Cheltenham Animal Shelter and incident response team Serve On which has a dog section on Friday (Jan 27th).

PD Bear gets a ‘well-done’ from his handler Sgt Geoff Blindell at the end of a successful shift

Sgt Geoff Blindell, Tri-Force dog section said, “The welfare of our dogs is paramount so we work to a replacement programme which means the vans are changed according to their age, mileage and reliability.

“Those features are assessed whenever they go in for a service or repair because these are not standard vehicles”. 

All are diesel fuelled Ford Focus Estates with manual gearboxes, registered on 11 December 2008 with mileage ranging from 92,595 to 104,203. The vehicles are fitted to carry dogs/large animals with cages in the back.

A cheque for £514.80, which was raised at last year’s Open Day and Paws on Patrol events, will also be handed over to W.A.G.s, a non-profit trust which was set up to help retired police dogs from Wiltshire, Avon & Somerset and Gloucestershire.