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Davis County Sheriff’s Office K-9 dead after months of health struggles

K9 Officer Rony standing next to a police cruiser. Courtesy of the Davis County Sheriff's Office.
Posted at 11:17 AM, Jul 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-05 13:35:54-04

FARMINGTON, Utah — The Davis County Sheriff’s Office announced the passing of a beloved K-9officer Saturday morning after months of health problems.

Rony was a six-year-old German Shepherd who began his career as a K-9 officer at 15-months-old when he was handpicked by his handler, Deputy Brad Larsen. He was trained in drug detection, patrol and tracking, deputy protection, building and area searches, and the apprehension of suspects.

In April, Rony began showing signs of injury and was later diagnosed by a veterinarian with cervical spine problems. He underwent multiple medical tests and was prescribed numerous medications to treat the condition. However, it continued to progress until he was later found dead in Deputy Larsen’s home.

“Our K-9s are integral to enforcement operations and strengthen our abilities to respond to emergencies,” said Sheriff Kelly V. Sparks in an official statement posted on the office’s website. “Rony had been struggling with medical issues for the last few months and was receiving care to address those issues. We are sad to learn of his passing and grateful to know he will no longer be in pain.”

Rony was one of three K-9s in the Davis County Sheriff’s Office Patrol Division and was recently featured in A&E Network’s K-9 competition series “America’s Top Dog.”