The El Dorado County Fire District has the distinct pleasure of using a specialized tool in detecting the use of accelerants at fire scenes in the form of an accelerant canine.
The team consists of the handler and the canine, Captain Brandon McKay and Percy, a black Labrador/Pointer mix. Captain McKay and Percy both underwent 160 hours of initial training with a master trainer. This training meets the requirements set forth by the California Police Officer Training Standards (POST). Percy also had an additional 160 hours of narcotics training prior to the accelerant training. When Percy alerts on an odor, she points it out with her nose and barks.
The team completed their training in July 2014. They are part of the El Dorado County Arson Task Force and the Sacramento Sierra Arson Task Force and assist fire departments, law enforcement agencies, and other surrounding teams.
Percy was carefully selected for this particular program due to its size, love for work, and drive. Percy was a rescue who was adopted from a SPCA in Northern California. The reward system used for this canine is a based on a ball reward and praise. When not working at a fire scene, she and her handler are constantly maintaining her skills. This daily routine can be anything from working or practicing at a fire scene to performing a demonstration for public groups or working on scent discrimination. Of most importance is their off time. When not working, the she enjoys the company and home life of Captain McKay’s family with whom she lives with.
The program is fully funded through donations from local businesses and community members. Veterinary services are donated by Dr. Barnes and his staff at the Goldorado Animal Hospital. Listed below are various businesses that have sponsored our program. If you are interested in donating or have questions about the program, please contact Captain McKay at firstname.lastname@example.org
Veerkamp Engineering www.dougveerkamp.com
El Dorado Disposal www.eldoradodisposal.com
Thompson Toyota www.thompsontoyota.com
Auburn Toyota www.auburntoyota.com
Auburn Ford www.auburnflm.com
Lee's Feed www.leesfeed.net
Clifton and Warren Feed, Placerville
Mosquito Outfitters www.mosquitocreekoutfitter.com
Kaufman & Clark Plastic Surgery www.thenaturalresult.com
Talisman Jewelry www.talismancollection.com
Hangtown Kennel Club www.hangtownkc.org
Placerville Lions Club www.e-clubhouse.org/sites/placervilleca
Goldorado Animal Hospital www.goldoradoanimalhosiptal.com