K-9 cop visits Ferriday Lower Elementary

Published 12:33 am Friday, September 18, 2009

FERRIDAY — After a week of learning about dogs, the second graders at Ferriday Lower Elementary School took their learning to the next level when they met Jaap, the Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office narcotics unit’s canine officer.

This week, the second graders have been reading a book, “Dogs,” which is about dog care, and already this week they have brought stuffed dogs to school, collected pictures of dogs and wrote dog stories.

But the week’s dog experiences reached their climax when CPSO K-9 officer Sgt. Denis Mulvihill and School Resource Officer Lee Ford came to the school and showed how Jaap responded to basic hand signals and obedience commands.

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The duo also demonstrated how Jaap is Mulvihill’s partner when Ford put on the bite sleeve, a large padded coat.

“I came around the corner yelling, ‘I’m not afraid of the police, the police don’t mean anything to me,’” Ford said.

Mulvihill gave the command for Jaap to respond, and the dog went for Ford’s arm.

“I started hollering, ‘Get him off me, get him off me,’ which is typical of subjects in that situation,” Ford said. “The kids love that.”

Afterwards, the students were eager to discuss what they had learned during the demonstration.

“Dogs can smell drugs,” said Xavier Washington, 7.

What Sitieriia Sanders, 7, remembered from the demonstration was how the dog could help her in a time of distress.

“He showed us what the K-9 would do if we get lost,” she said. “He will smell the tracks and find us.”

Zoe Davis, 7, was struck by the fact that the dog is the officer’s partner.

“He told us about when somebody broke into his house, his dog smelled (the intruder and kept him there until the police came,” she said.

Mulvihill said the K-9 officers will try to visit all of the parish schools in the coming weeks.