CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WBOY) — Babydog and Gov. Jim Justice Tuesday honored Raisy, an award-winning K-9 who has served the West Virginia Division of Forestry (WVDOF) for 10 years, using her keen sense of smell to find forest fires and chase down arsonists.
K-9 Raisy celebrated her retirement after a storied career where she’s helped investigate 197 West Virginia wildfires/arsons, 29 missing persons cases and 78 criminal investigations for outside agencies. She’s also helped federal agencies with seven wildfire investigations in states including California, North Dakota, South Dakota and Virginia.
Her partner, Assistant State Forester Don Kelley, has worked with her for nine years and said he will miss her.
“Raisy is a loyal companion and has dedicated her life to fighting crime and I’m going to miss working with her,” Kelley told Gov. Justice’s Office.
K-9 Raisy was named West Virginia Police Canine Association K-9 of the Year from 2016-17 and earned the National Police Bloodhound Association Lifesaving Award and Raleigh County Sheriff’s Office Meritorious Conduct Award in 2014. What a good girl!
According to PBS.org, “Researchers have estimated that a bloodhound’s nose consists of approximately 230 million olfactory cells, or ‘scent receptors’ — 40 times the number in humans.” Because of that, bloodhounds’ evidence is admissible in some U.S. courts—a first according to Guinness World Records.
The WVDOF has used bloodhounds to track down arsonists for 25 years, according to the Governor’s Office.