Police Dog Kaos back on duty after near-fatal stabbing
THEY had been inseparable since joining the dog squad seven years ago, but the night of February 2 nearly ended there time together when Police Dog Kaos was stabbed on duty and left fighting for life on the side of a north Brisbane street.
His handler, Senior Constable James "Jimmy" Griffiths, described the night he nearly lost his best mate as a "run-of-the-mill job with a major outcome" that left the seven-year-old german shepherd with a 12cm stab wound, and Sen Constable Griffiths unsure if his beloved partner would survive.
"It was emotional and a pretty crazy sort of moment when you see your dog, your best mate, bleeding on the side of the road," Sen Constable Griffiths said.
"It's honestly not like your dog has been stabbed, it's like your best mate's been stabbed.
"It's like your family member has been stabbed."
Kaos and Sen Constable Griffiths had been called to a job in Gordon Park where three people had been taken into custody over a suspected stolen car.
Two more people - the dog squad's target - had escaped arrest and were hiding from police.
"I sent Kaos after them and it was during that time that he caught up to them that he's been stabbed in the throat (before) they were able to get away from him again," Sen Constable Griffiths said.
"I caught up to Kaos but I still didn't know he had been stabbed, he didn't display any signs of being injured and he continued to fight, so I sent him again…
"The crews were then able to find us and take the offenders into custody."
Kaos was seriously injured and would require extensive and immediate medical care to save his life.
According to the vet, it was the first aid provided by QPS crews at the scene that saved the dog's life before he was able to go into emergency surgery.
After an emotional month off duty for both Kaos and Sen Constable Griffiths, the pair were able to resume their work together.
"When Kaos and I first came out on the road he was a fresh-faced pup trying to track people down, and I was a fresh-faced handler trying to find people, and we both really just had to rely on each other," Sen Constable Griffiths said.
"Now we have such a strong trust in each other that we've gained through life experiences like the stabbing.
"We have a trust and a bond that you just can't replicate, and it means we can be out on the streets together doing what we both love."
Sen Constable Griffiths said for almost as long as he's been a member of the QPS, he'd wanted to be part of the dog squad.
To him, getting to go to work everyday with his best mate to help people in need is the "best job in the Service."
"It's not always about catching the bad guys, but it's also about helping people too," Sen Constable Griffiths said.
"Our dogs will search for missing people, missing kids, grandma and grandpa with dementia who have gone for a walk, people that want to hurt themselves or have mental health issues.... There's a lot of job satisfaction from helping people in those situations.
"Although, I do love chasing bad guys too and I love the thrill of the chase. We both do."
Police dog Kaos will soon enter the next phase of his life, with retirement on the cards set for the next 12 months.
Although an end of an era for the brave pair, who have had to endure more than most, it will mark the start of a new beginning for the best mates, who will remain inseparable.
"Kaos will get to sleep out on the deck and relax like a normal dog. He'll live a life of leisure."
Originally published as Police Dog Kaos back on duty after near-fatal stabbing