Therapy and Narcotics Canine Units

The assignment for Canine Units are highly competitive. Officers must be able to and have the means to provide 
and care for their canine and ensure their health and safety at all times. Officers must have previous experience in law enforcement and is based on job performance, drive, and ability to conduct their duties without much supervision. 
Canine officers have specialized training before, during, and after assignment. Once assigned canine officers continually train with their canine counterparts to ensure they can provide the best possible services the community needs.

Therapy K-9 

Snyder Police Department’s first Therapy K-9, “Lexi”, is a Border Collie Mix.

  Therapy K-9 Duties:
  • To assist in being a liaison to help build positive relationships between police and the community.
  • Provide comfort for crime victims and trauma victims.
  • Assist in helping individuals with emotional disabilities such as Anxiety, Depression, Bipolar/Mood disorders, Panic Attacks, Stress, PTSD, etc. by offering comfort or emotional support.
  • To improve morale of citizens and employees within the City of Snyder and surrounding areas.
The Therapy K-9 Unit is utilized, but not limited to, nursing homes, hospitals, public schools, universities, daycare facilities, rehabilitation facilities, hospices, social service organizations, volunteer organizations, community events, local businesses, domestic violence victim shelters and volunteer organizations which allow Therapy K-9 interactions.

Therapy K-9 Teams are allowed to be utilized with or without student interaction in all Snyder Independent School District (SISD) schools and buildings during the school year, due to a partnership with SISD.

Our Therapy K-9 Team is available for supervisor dispatch to any secure scene where a natural/manmade disaster, accident, trauma, illness or crime has occurred to provide comfort and/or emotional support for all those involved.

Lexi's Story

Lexi was located in a busy area of Snyder, with no owners stepping forward to claim her.
With the help of community members, she was turned over to the Snyder Animal Shelter where she
 was safe from the dangers of being injured on the roadways. After spending quite a few weeks
in the Snyder Animal Shelter she was rescued and fostered by our local Second Chance Dog Rescue
in Snyder, Texas.

Once the Snyder Police Department began looking for a canine fit for
our new Therapy K-9 program we were informed about Lexi. Upon completing a temperament evaluation
with our South Plains Service Dogs trainer out of Lubbock, Texas we knew Lexi would be our fit.

When attempting to finalize her adoption, Second Chance Dog Rescue generously donated
Lexi to the City of Snyder, cost free. Lexi was adopted by the City of Snyder and
became an official part of our department on January 4, 2019.

Lexi has since completed her Therapy K-9 training with South Plains Service Dogs.
Lexi passed her Public Access Test (PAT) on, September 18, 2019, certifying her as a Therapy Dog. 

Lexi has been utilized to assist officers and staff suffering from PTSD, after a local officer 
involved shooting in February 2019.

Lexi and her current handler, Officer Bailey Latham, were one of three therapy dog teams
deployed to Odessa, Texas after the Odessa/Midland mass shootings
which occurred on August 31, 2019.

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                   Narcotics K-9 
Lucas                           Lucas
Snyder Police Department’s Narcotics K-9, “Lucas”, is a Belgian Malinois.

  Narcotics K-9 Duties:
  • To detect illegal narcotics such as heroin, methamphetamines, cocaine, marijuana, and other narcotics.
  • Search vehicles, homes, yards, schools, and businesses for the presence of illegal drugs.
  • To assist in making our community safer by seizing illegal narcotics from our local area.

Lucas's Story

Lucas was previously utilized in Muleshoe, Texas as a narcotics K-9 prior to being purchased by the City of Snyder, to implement a Narcotics K-9 Unit for the first time since the mid 90s.

Lucas became an official member of the Snyder Police Department on March 3, 2016 .

Since his hire, Lucas has been utilized on hundreds of
different occasions detecting numerous
 types of illegal substances resulting in arrests. Lucas has been utilized on many major drug busts
within the City of Snyder and Scurry County.

During Lucas first time attending a National Narcotic Detector Dog Association (NNDDA) conference/competition, Lucas received 11th place out of approximately 100 K-9 teams with
his current handler Officer Tanner Garcia.

Lucas has also received a donation of  bullet and stab resistant body armor from a non-profit organization "Vested Interest in K9s", due to Officer Tanner Garcia applying for the grant to further provide protection for his canine counterpart.

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