MENANDS, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A very special memorial happened in Menands on Wednesday for nine fallen K9 officers who did their part to protect and serve.
The ceremony was held at the K9 memorial near the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society.
One K9 officer had died while in active duty, but the rest passed away due to old age during retirement. Families of officers who lost their dog and local police departments placed American flags and flowers on their graves.
Officers tell NEWS10 ABC these animals become their family and they feel it’s important to memorialize their four-legged friends who fought by their sides.
“We live and breathe K9. These dogs come and live with us 24/7. We see them more than we see our families so when they pass, it’s a big deal to us so we’re here to memorialize them,” said Officer Kyle McCraith, President of the Capital District K9 Memorial Cemetery Association.
Officers say many police dogs pass shortly after retirement for unknown reasons. They believe it’s because the K9’s miss serving in the field.