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CONTRIBUTED PHOTOEmmaus Police Department’s K-9 Ronny wears a bullet and stab protective vest. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOEmmaus Police Department’s K-9 Ronny wears a bullet and stab protective vest.

Emmaus Police Department’s K-9 Ronny receives body armor

Thursday, February 2, 2017 by CONTRIBUTED ARTICLE in Local News

Emmaus Police Department’s K-9 Ronny has received a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from the nonprofit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc.

K-9 Ronny’s vest is sponsored by The Landis Family Foundation and embroidered with the sentiment “Gifted with gratitude - The Landis Family Foundation.”

Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. is a 501c (3) charity located in East Taunton, Mass. whose mission is to provide bullet and stab protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States.

The nonprofit was established in 2009 to assist law enforcement agencies with this potentially lifesaving body armor for their four-legged K-9 officers. Since its inception, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. has provided over 2,200 protective vests, in 50 states, through private and corporate donations, at a cost of over $1.9 million.

All vests are custom made in the USA by Armor Express in Central Lake, Mich.

The program is open to dogs actively employed in the United States with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K-9 graduates, as well as K-9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate.

The donation to provide one protective vest for a law enforcement K-9 is $1,050. Each vest has a value of between $1,795 and $2,234 and a 5-year warranty and is an average weight of 4 to 5 pounds.

There are an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K-9s throughout the United States.

For more information or to learn about volunteer opportunities, call 508-824-6978. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provides information, lists events and accepts tax-deductible donations of any denomination at www.vik9s.org or mailed to P.O. Box 9, East Taunton, MA 02718.