Back in June, the Drug Enforcement Administration issued a warning to police officers about the dangers of exposure to fentanyl, the same drug that killed Prince.
Last month, three dogs from a Florida K-9 unit became affected by the dangerous narcotic after a Broward County raid. Detective Andy Weiman told NBC News about the symptoms a dog named Primus suffered, saying: “He wouldn’t drink water. He would release his toy very easily. And he was looking lethargic, almost sedated. We knew something was wrong.”
The police dogs – along with fellow K-9 dogs Packer and Finn — were rushed to a local animal hospital after being exposed to an unseen amount of fentanyl during the bust.
The Detective explained how the pups were able to get the drug in their system, adding: “If fentanyl is loose in an environment, it can spread out where a dog can absorb it through his pads. He could sniff it up through his jowls. And fentanyl is so toxic, so strong that the very smallest amount of it — that you couldn’t even see — could affect the dog. You wouldn’t know they’ve even ingested it.”
The employees at the animal hospital noticed the dogs were overdosing, and quickly gave them Narcan shots for treatment.
Luckily, all three dogs survived. Detective Weiman recalled: “By 4 p.m. that afternoon he was fine. And we went back to work the next day.”
We’re just so glad the dogs are okay! In Florida at least local vets have been helping train police dogs to spot the dangerous drug. We hope the rest of the country’s police departments follow suit.