A beloved police dog has passed away just 12 days into his retirement, leaving his partner of 7 years heartbroken. Hondo, a beautiful german shepherd who worked with Vancouver police Const. Sandra Glendinning passed away on Tuesday afternoon.
Hondo had his share of health problems, but they never slowed him down much and he always came back to work ready to serve. In 2010 he had a near fatal immune disease and he had surgery in November to remove his spleen. The spleen had a cancerous tumour and the vet warned that when the cancer came back it would be aggressive, but Glendinning didn’t expect it this soon after he retired.
“Hondo’s getting on, and it’s time for him to enjoy a very well-deserved retirement. He’s ready to crash out on the big fluffy dog bed in front of our fireplace, and to being self-assigned the job of keeping starlings off the bird feeders in our back yard,” she wrote in her blog recently. On Monday they went for a walk together and Hondo was his usual enthusiastic self.
But on Tuesday that changed she wrote, “Hondo was propped on his forelegs, labouring for breath. It was clear he had suffered a catastrophic setback — he made a soft cry with every breath. It was time. My dear, sweet dog, my faithful partner since 2005 was leaving me.” Police dogs and their handlers grow very close as they both live and work together and trust each other with their lives every day, so for Glendinning it is like losing a member of her family.
Hondo was a treasured member of the department who loved to chase bad guys and track scents, and will remembered for his devotion both to his job and his partner.