HomeTop StoriesEcuadorian firefighters present five rescue dog awards during retirement ceremony

Ecuadorian firefighters present five rescue dog awards during retirement ceremony

QUITO, Ecuador (AP) — Five rescue dogs were honored Monday by Ecuador’s fire department in a ceremony, formally retiring them to new adoptive owners after seven years of service.

Lt. Col. Esteban Cardenas said the dogs – Ares, Kratos, Zeus, Titan and Gaia – were among the first class of dogs used by the department’s rescue unit, which works with German shepherds and golden retrievers.

Cardenas recalled some of their achievements, including helping find survivors of earthquakes and landslides in Ecuador and beyond, including a mission to Mexico in 2017.

He said vet reports had suggested it was time to retire the five dogs.

“Today is a day with mixed feelings for us. We really wouldn’t want them to leave. We would have liked to have them join our ranks,” said Cardenas.

The dogs’ new owners were carefully selected after meeting certain requirements, he said.

Gaia’s new owner, Valeria Zevallos, said she was amazed by her new pet’s previous career saving lives.

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“Many adventures await us now. After her work adventures, family adventures,” she said.

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