Capitola's Police Canine "Rukus"
In 2014, the Capitola Police Department welcomed the newest members to their Police K-9 service team. Police Officer Dan Weagle and Police Canine “Rukus” started working patrol in April of that year.
The Capitola Public Safety Foundation provided funding that allowed the canine team to attend the mandated training required by the Police Officer Standard & Training consortium. This five week training course certified both the officer and the canine in suspect apprehension and drug detection.
Rukus was a 17 month old male Belgian Milionis/German Sheppard cross when the Capitola PD acquired him. He was born and raised in the Czech Republic until arriving in California in December 2012. He was approximately 17 months old and weighed approximately 75 lbs when he arrived in Capitola. Canine officers Pedro Zamora and officer Weagle selected Rukus from a group of five dogs.
Since that day, Rukus and officer Weagle have been inseparable. When canine school started Rukus was very “Green”, meaning he has no training. During those five weeks Rukus and officer Weagle worked together and learned how to apprehend suspects, do building searches, area searches, obedience, handler protection, narcotics detection in buildings, vehicles and outside. Rukus can let officer Weagle know when there is a suspect behind a door or in an area too high for him to reach.
When Rukus detects narcotics, he puts his nose as close to the drugs as possible and then sits. Rukus loves to find drugs and is focused on one task at a time when asked to do so. He is a VERY driven and energetic dog with a lot of personality. He will do ANYTHING for a toy or a little praise.
After completing patrol school, Rukus and officer Weagle began working on tracking suspects. He picked it up fast and was soon learning to find articles such as weapons, keys and other pieces of evidence soon.
We have a lot of confidence in Rukus and officer Weagle and we are excited to have them serve the City of Capitola and the County of Santa Cruz for many years to come. Without the financial assistance from the Capitola Public Safety Foundation, this increased public safety service would not be possible.