Rutherford Co. K-9 deputy collapses from heat exhaustion - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Rutherford Co. K-9 deputy collapses from heat exhaustion

Photo courtesy Rutherford Co. Sheriff's Office Photo courtesy Rutherford Co. Sheriff's Office

The Rutherford County Sheriff's Office is making some changes after a K-9 officer collapsed in the heat over the weekend.

Ely, a 3-year-old Belgian Malinois, was helping deputies search for a shooting suspect Sunday when he showed signs of heat distress.

Deputies gave him water and let him rest, and then let him off the lead so he could search at his own pace.

But about 50 to 60 yards later, officials say the dog wasn't doing any better and collapsed.

"They love to work. They are smart. They are energetic. And they'll run themselves to death for you and that's what he's done," said Rutherford County Sheriff's Sgt. Lee Young.

Sheriff Robert Arnold said Monday the department is going to try to get cooling vests for the K-9s to use in hot weather, as well as medic packs.

The department is also looking into getting heat sensors for all its vehicles and will implement more advanced classes about medical emergencies for the K-9 deputies.

Ely will remain under a veterinarian's care for the next few days, and as for the shooting suspect, deputies were able to find him and arrest him.

If you would like to make a donation to help purchase the cooling vests and medic packs, you can make a check payable to the Rutherford County Sheriff's Office with K-9 in the memo line. The address is 940 New Salem Road, Murfreesboro, TN 37129.

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