Police dogs in service in Lichfield and Burntwood are to be among the first in the UK to be given body armour.

The custom-made items are being rolled out by Staffordshire Police to better protect its animals.

The body armour will offer protection against knives, bullets and impact from blunt objects.

Chief Inspector Dave Kelsall, head of the force’s dog support unit, said:

“Police dogs are part of our policing family, one of the team and as such should be seen and valued the same as our police officers.

“This is why Staffordshire Police, along with our national colleagues, gave our police dogs collar numbers.

“Providing personal issue body armour is the next step to ensuring we protect our dogs who face the same dangers as our police handlers, and, in fact, are more than likely the first ones running towards the threat.

“They now have the same level of protection in order to reduce the risk of serious injury or worse, being killed in the line of duty.

“This is a proud moment for me and I am grateful for the investment by Staffordshire Police and hard work by the dog support officers in the work to find the right kit.”

Chief Inspector Dave Kelsall, Staffordshire Police

The rollout comes after Finn’s Law was introduced in June 2019 after the German Shepherd was stabbed in the head and chest as he protected PC Dave Wardell from a knife-wielding robbery suspect in Stevenage in 2016.

The legislation makes it harder for those who harm service animals to claim they were acting in self-defence.

Under the previous law, the attack on Finn could only be treated as criminal damage.

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  1. I for one can not wait to see a fully decked out angry Alsatian chasing a spotty teen on an e-scooter down Market Street.

  2. To be fair to the police. Nationally, they have faced a reduction of 21,000 officers, 23,000 support staff and the closure of 600 stations.
    Question to Home Secretary Patel, if you take away 21,000 and add 9,000 do you end up with more or less than the original number.
    Anyone voting Conservative voted for these cuts.
    The fault, dear voter lies not in the stars but in ourselves.

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