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Bradley County Deputy who lost K9 in June welcomes new partner

Though Shope is pleased with his new partner, he advised, “Jäger has some big paws to fill”, referring to his deceased partner K-9 Deputy Sheriff Lucy. (Image: Bradley Co. Sheriff's Dept.)

The Bradley County Sheriff’s Office has added a new member to their K-9 Unit.

He’s nearly 2.5 feet tall on all four legs and weighs 75 pounds. His name is Jäger, and he’s a Dutch Shepherd. Jäger was bought last August who is certified as an official multi-purpose dog for the agency. Jäger’s certifications include tracking, criminal apprehension, building searches, and narcotics detection.

Deputy Chris Shope who is Jäger’s K-9 handler said “Jäger is trained to locate five main odors of illegal narcotics that include methamphetamine, marijuana, cocaine, heroine, and ecstasy.”

Patrol Deputy Chris Shope, attended and completed a 6-week Handler’s Course with Starr Mountain Canine Academy after meeting his new partner.

Jäger fills the spot of former and beloved K-9 Deputy Sheriff, 3-year-old Lucy, a Belgium Malinois whose remains were found last June beside a railroad track after escaping from her kennel. Though Shope is pleased with his new partner, he advised, “Jäger has some big paws to fill”, referring to his deceased partner K-9 Deputy Sheriff Lucy.

Related | Gallery: Bradley County pays tribute to fallen K9 officer

Shope explained, “It’s been challenging over the past few months for my family and I while dealing with Lucy’s sudden death. Lucy will always have a special place in my heart, but I’m delighted to have an opportunity to continue being a K-9 Handler at Bradley County Sheriff’s Office. Although Lucy and Jäger are two completely different dogs, they both share the same quality – a committed partner.”

Sheriff Eric Watson said, “I’m grateful Deputy Chris Shope has made the decision to continue with our agency as a K-9 Handler. Although Lucy can never be replaced, Patrol Deputy Chris Shope and K-9 Deputy Jäger have already proven to be a great team during their many weeks of training. I’m confident our agency has acquired a top-quality K-9 that will be a great asset to the sheriff’s office, and his skills will continue to progress while training with Chattanooga Police Department’s K-9 Unit.”

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