This morning, the Boise Police Department welcomed its newest member, Clover the Wellness Canine. Before she receives her badge and officially joins BPD’s Bike Unit, Clover, a 2-year-old Golden Retriever will undergo six weeks of American Kennel Club certified training through the Idaho Capitol City Kennel Club.
Earlier this year, the Boise Police Department welcomed Captain Spencer Fomby to lead the newly formed Training, Education, and Development Division. Along with a greater focus on training and education, the department recognized a need to continually develop and care for officers over the course of their careers, addressing their physical, mental and emotional wellbeing so they can best serve their community.
“Wellness is an important and often overlooked factor when it comes to an officer’s development as they move through their career,” said Boise Police Chief Ryan Lee. “Officers, like anyone else, need the programs and tools to manage the stress they encounter in their day to day lives, alongside the often traumatic events that are unique to this profession.”
With that focus in mind, members of the Bike Patrol Unit researched ways to positively impact the personal health and wellbeing of our officers and civilian staff.
“After looking into the benefits of emotional support animals and how they could be applied to the policing profession we reached out to our partners at the Idaho Humane Society for help,” said Bike Unit Officer Harry Maalouf. “We spent some time getting to know Clover and knew she would be a great addition to our team.”
Clover has had to face some challenges of her own. She was surrendered to the Idaho Humane Society after her original family could no longer care for her and her medical needs. She was sick and severely underweight because of two large intestinal blockages that kept her from absorbing the necessary nutrients to thrive and grow. Thanks to IHS her issues were corrected through surgery and she is now a happy and healthy dog.
“Our incredible donors at the Idaho Humane Society make stories like this possible every day. Clover’s natural instincts of sociability, interacting with new people and other animals, adeptness, and aptitude for learning makes her a terrific fit for this role,” said Tiffany Shields, Clover’s foster parent and the director of Animal Care and Control. “As her foster parent, I was thrilled to introduce Clover to our friends and colleagues at the Boise Police Department.
Once her training is complete, Clover will be housed at the Downtown Substation and work alongside her partner, Officer Maalouf. Make sure to say hello when you see them out in the community and look for Clover updates on our social media platforms.