Benzo, a Chandler Police K-9, has received a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from non-profit organization Vested Interest in K-9s, Inc. The vest was sponsored by Renee Thomas of Chandler, AZ and embroidered with the sentiment “Honoring those who served and sacrificed”.
Vested Interest in K-9s, Inc. is a 501c(3) charity located in East Taunton, Massachusetts whose mission is to provide bullet and stab protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States. The non-profit was established in 2009 to assist law enforcement agencies with this potentially lifesaving body armor for their four-legged K-9 officers. Since its inception, Vested Interest in K-9s, Inc. has provided over 3,100 protective vests in 50 states through private and corporate donations at a value of $5.7 million dollars.
The program is open to dogs actively employed in the U.S. with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K-9 graduates, as well as K-9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate. There is an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K-9s throughout the United States.
The donation to provide one protective vest for a law enforcement K-9 is $950.00. Each vest has a value between $1,744 – $2,283, and a five-year warranty. The vests weigh four to five pounds on average.
For more information or to learn about volunteer opportunities, please call 508-824-6978. Vested Interest in K-9s, Inc. provides information, lists events, and accepts tax-deductible donations of any denomination at www.vik9s.org or mailed to P.O. Box 9 East Taunton, MA 02718.