Diogi, an almost nine-year-old German Shepherd, served New Jersey’s Police Department for seven years as part of the K-9 unit, but his career was cut short after the canine officer was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
The news of the terminal illness didn’t come easy for Diogi’s human partner, Officer Joseph Van Pelt, but nevertheless, Van Pelt loved and honored his four-legged work partner until the dog’s last day.
The dog and the officer’s friendship was meant to be. The bond the two of them had was unlike any other.
“He just walked right to the gate of the crate, licked my face, and I said, ‘That, that’s gonna be my partner,’” recalled Van Pelt of his first encounter with his dog. “It’s 100 percent love. It’s 100 percent loyalty. It’s 100 percent dedication we have to each other. It’s just a total, complete bond.”
When the Police department learned there was nothing veterinarians could do to save Diogi’s life, an emotional farewell was organized for the k-9 officer.
Police officers, family members and Diogi’s friends lined up the street outside the Red Bank Veterinary Hospital for one last roll call. After paying tribute to the dog, the furry officer was humanly put to sleep.
Van Pelt gave his partner one last kiss on the head and walked him into the animal hospital. That was the last time the two friends were together.
Diogi is remembered as the true hero he is and his loved ones miss him dearly.