Shaka The Police Dog: Shelter Dog to K-9 Cop

Shaka was a death row dog, on the short list for euthanasia.  How such an amazing dog found herself in in a crowded New York shelter, we’ll never know.  Luckily for Shaka, her high energy and need to work caught the eye of a rescuer.

Cyd Cross, President of Out of the Pits Rescue, pulled her out of the shelter and took her home.  It was then that her drive to work was discovered.  Cyd contacted Diane Jessup, founder of Law Dogs in Washington State about the potential of this former shelter dog.  Shaka was transported across the country to the program and passed their eligibility test immediately upon arrival.   She has served as a narcotics officer for multiple jurisdictions since completing her training.  See her in action in the video below!

After working in drug detection for the next four years, the Washougal Police Department unfortunately had to downsize their canine unit, so Shaka was offered up for relocation. Officer Wells who had experience with bomb-sniffing dogs was chosen as her partner.

“I’m almost certain that if she could figure out a way to drive my patrol car, I’d be completely out of the picture,” joked Wells.

Since arriving on their force, Shaka has shown an amazing aptitude as a detection dog. In her first few months, she found drugs in 18 out of the 20 times she was deployed. On her state certification exam she scored 100 percent. “She pretty much walked me through it, because she’s a four-year veteran with a phenomenal nose,” Wells told


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