MPD launches fundraiser for new K-9 bulletproof vests

MADISON, Wis. — The Madison Police Department has launched a new fundraising campaign to help provide department K-9s with new, lightweight bulletproof vests.

The department’s K-9 unit is looking to buy six “K-9 storm vests,” which are designed to be light enough for the K-9s to wear during their entire patrol shift. Vests currently in use are too heavy for the dogs to wear for the full duration of their shift and are only put on during high-risk situations if time allows.

“The dogs will have something that is going to protect them at all times,” Officer Eric Disch, who’s been a K-9 handler for the past seven years, said. “Having the Storm vests ready to go, it makes sense when we have to act immediately. Dangerous situations can’t always be planned.”

The new vests would be worn by K-9s Domo, Bowie, Roko, Allied, Charlie and Patton. Each vest costs $2,600, according to the department.

MPD is working with the non-profit Keeping K-9s in Kevlar to cover the costs.

“We owe it to them,” Disch said. “We owe it to our donors and the general public that, when we are sending these dogs into dangerous situations, they have just as much protection as a human officer.”

Anyone looking to donate to the fundraiser can contribute to Keeping K-9s in Kevlars Paypal account or its Facebook page.