Trenton Police Dog Injured, Rear Legs Paralyzed
Police dog Kopper is 12 years old and has worked with the Trenton Police Department for 10 years.
Trenton police dog Kopper sustained an injury that temporarily paralyzed his rear legs during a training exercise in Alpena on Oct. 1.
The injury took place while Kopper was attending the National Association of Professional Canine Handlers annual seminar with his handler, Trenton Police Officer Rick Tanguay.
As Kopper was running after a decoy he suffered a fibrocartilaginous embolism or spinal stroke, which, although not painful in most cases, caused paralysis to his rear legs, according to Tanguay.
"I was scared for him, but luckily I had good people around me and we took him to the hospital in less than 15 minutes," Tanguay said.
Tanguay and another officer rushed Kopper to a veterinarian hospital in Alpena where he was stabilized and transferred to an animal neurology and MRI center in Commerce. Kopper underwent an MRI, which allowed doctors to identify the cause of the paralysis.
Kopper could not stand on his own or move his rear legs on the day of the injury, but is now walking, sitting and standing on his own, according to Tanguay.
"Kopper is now home and resting," Tanguay said. "Kopper is currently doing home exercises to regain his strength in his rear legs."
There was no word on whether or not Kopper will return to active duty with the Trenton Police Department as of Wednesday afternoon.
Kopper is 12 years old and has worked with the Trenton Police Department for 10 years.