homepage logo

An Officer and a German Shepherd

By Staff | Apr 12, 2017

Photo Provided Police Chief Rob Haught has the attention of K-9 Thor.

Sistersville Police Chief Rob Haught has a new companion by his side. Haught has recently purchased Thor, his new K-9 crime dog. Thor is only 11 weeks old but he already exhibits great characteristics that officers look for when training K-9′ such as playfulness, aptitude for work, and protective instincts. The personality of a puppy can be determined at an early age, and Thor shows great potential. Thor comes from a long line of working dogs going back as far as 7 generations on both the mother’s and the father’s side. In fact, Thor’s grandfather, Sumo, is currently working with the FBI in Clarksburg. Haught stated that as far as genetics go, Thor is like a “Ferrari”. After looking at Thor’s feet, you can tell that he is going to be a large dog.

Thor is considered to be of the working dog type variety as opposed to the show dog variety. The difference is in their backs. Show dogs have sloped backs where working dogs have a straighter back. The straight back allows the dog to be able to support more weight and be generally stronger than their show companions.

Haught became one of the original K-9 handlers in the area when he purchased his former dog Mauser. Mauser was well received in the community, but unfortunately he passed away after 14 years of service. After Mauser passed, Haught decided he wanted another personal companion dog so he purchased Thor.

Thor is not the property of Sistersville, he is owned by Police Chief Haught. This means that the city has put forth zero funding for Thor and Haught will be responsible for veterinary checkups, shots, feeding and all around general care of Thor.

Haught will also be responsible for training Thor in searching of narcotics. Sistersville will be getting a lot of benefits from Thor without having to spend a dime.

Thor is currently being trained on his social skills by visiting the grade school every week to become more familiar with people. Mauser also spent a great deal of time with the school children. In fact, Mauser was given an honorary diploma from the grade school. Haught stated that the current goal is to, “Socialize him as an approachable dog so that he can be an ambassador for the Police Department.”

Thor will begin his narcotics training after he is about two years old. Haught feels that Thor will be an excellent narcotics dog because of his play drive. Haught stated, “They don’t have any idea what a drug is, they want the reward for finding it. Their reward is that they get to play”. Haught explained that you find a toy that the dog is crazy about and get him playing with it. Then after time, you begin hiding the toy so that the dog becomes familiar with searching. After that, you begin to associate that toy with the scent of narcotics. Then you take the toy away, but the dog already has the scent imprinted in his mind, so whenever he finds a narcotic, the dog associates it with a playful game.

You can tell that Thor is going to have a great future with the Sistersville Police Department.