Officer Dennis Funari with K-9 Chico
Due to the success of the K-9 unit, support of the community, and generous donations received by the Kiwanis Club, we have acquired three new dogs: Ricker, Echo and Max.
The dogs and their handlers, Ptl. Dennis Funari, Josh Frey and JP Toth, completed their training and were officially sworn in on Monday, December 11,2017.
In the first 6 months of 2018, the unit was deployed 142 times. 95 were for Community Relations activities, including increased presence in schools and high density areas such as Crocker Park. The Enforcement activities include 16 mutual aid requests for other agencies, 25 sniffs, 9 area searches, and 5 force protection. Force protection, while low in number, is significant for reducing the need for officer involved use of force and encouraging surrender of dangerous suspects, reducing the risk of injury to both. 18 times the deployment of the K-9 directly led to arrests/citable offenses.
The Westlake Kiwanis' Westlake Kiwanis Youth Foundation Inc. started a “Canine Fund” in late 2016 that raised approximately $36,000 for the acquisition, training, and deployment of the unit in 2017.
The Westlake Kiwanis are continuing to accept donations for the ongoing expenses of the unit. Please make your check payable to Westlake Kiwanis, note on or with the check "Canine Fund," and mail to
25935 Detroit Rd., Box 179
Westlake, OH 44145