Police dogs are an essential component of every law enforcement agency because of the crucial roles they play, including the location of missing persons and other individuals. These trustworthy K9 police are more than simply pets; they are well-liked coworkers and heroes in their own right. They have earned a respectful send-off that recognises the years of effort and commitment they have put in, and they should receive it when the time comes for them to cross the rainbow bridge.

Recently, a K9 who was in the latter stages of his illness was given a moving farewell by his fellow officers. Candy, a German shepherd, had served with distinction at the Virginia Beach Sheriff’s Office ever since 2014, when she first joined the department. According to the sheriff’s office, she was the first narcotics detection dog for the department. During her nearly ten-year career, she conducted over 2,900 operational searches, which resulted in the seizure of 278 pounds of illegal narcotics. She also served as the agency’s first narcotics detection dog.

Candy and her handler, Master Deputy II Anthony “Tony” Natalzia, shared a unique connection with one another. He revealed, “She accompanied me everywhere I went. You spend more time with these pets than you do with your own family.

Natalzia has recently observed that Candy is moving at a more leisurely pace. She began to walk with a limp and thereafter refused to eat. A trip to the veterinarian unearthed some terrible information: Candy had cancer, and it had already metastasized throughout her body. Natalzia said that the substance was “in her lungs, and it was everywhere else.” “The veterinarian advised me that there was nothing that could be done, and I couldn’t even wrap my head around the idea. Simply put, we were there for a routine checkup.”

In light of the dismal outlook, Natalzia took the agonising choice to have Candy put to sleep so that she may put an end to her pain. But before saying his ultimate farewell to his devoted companion, Candy was given a heartfelt send-off by her fellow officers.

On that day, which would out to be fatal, the officers planned a formal walkout for Candy. They paid their respects to the departing K9 by lining the hallways of the Virginia Beach Correctional Centre as she made her final exit from her place of employment. As they said their goodbyes to their four-legged friend, many of the policemen showed clear signs of grief. Throughout the entire process, their canine companion carried her cherished tennis ball with her at all times.

Following the emotionally draining walkout, Natalzia drove Candy to the veterinarian, where she passed away without any discomfort or pain. Natalzia expressed his disappointment to Candy that they wouldn’t have more time to spend together after Candy retired, as Candy’s retirement was scheduled for this year. He stated, “You think you’re going to have some time with your dog after they retire, so I feel cheated on that end of it.” (You think you’re going to have some time with your dog after they retire). However, as a responsible handler, there was no way that I could allow her to suffer so that I could fulfil my own needs.

Natalzia has recently started working with a new K9 companion named Pablo, but he will always hold the memories of his time spent with Candy in the highest regard. He developed a great connection with Candy, and he wants to do the same thing with Pablo.

This touching and moving send-off was a befitting tribute to the valiant canine who was being honoured. Candy, may you rest in peace knowing that your legacy will continue to live on in the hearts of those who had the privilege of serving besides you. ❤💙

In honour of this selfless K9 officer, I ask that you please share this moving tale with others.