K-9 Domo holds special role for Madison police

MADISON, Wis. — Madison’s newest police dog will focus on catching drug dealers, searching buildings and tracking suspects. He’ll also have another mission: carrying on a very important name.

K-9 Domo is named after 5-year-old Dominic May, who tragically died in a car crash in 2018.

“Dominic always had a light about him,” said Meghan May, Dominic’s mom. “He loved helping others and would always put the need of others before himself.”

She said Dominic wanted to be a police officer. He even inspired Madison’s former police chief.

“We were impressed with his energy, his vitality, his love of everyone and everything,” said Mike Koval.

When Dominic died, then-chief Koval named him an honorary Madison police officer, but his spirit lives on now in Domo.

“That zest for life and that spirit of helpfulness, and that spirit of making sure no one gets left behind, which was the definition of Dominic,” Koval said.

Through their nonprofit Dominic’s Ripple, the May family raised the funds to bring Domo to MPD.

“We had the opportunity to meet Domo for the first time on what would’ve been Dominic’s 7th birthday,” Meghan May said.

At the cemetery where Dominic is buried, Meghan May said she knew there was something about Domo that was just like her son.

“I just really want to try and utilize him to just really live on what Dominic wanted,” said Domo’s handler Drew Strachota. “Just knowing who he’s named after, what Dominic meant and Dominic’s Ripple as an organization, it’s been extremely easy to find motivation to get him to work and I just hope we can be a good representation for both Dominic’s Ripple and the May family”

Koval said this is just the beginning of Dominic’s legacy. The family is also talking about building a playground in his honor as well.