In 2005, Ero became the first canine to serve the Miami University Police Department. Ptl. Keith Hibbard began working with Ero in 2007. Ero is certified as a dual purpose canine, trained in patrol functions and explosives detection. The team may be utilized for suspect apprehension, tracking, building and area searches as well as protective sweeps for events or bomb threats.
The police working dog is used as an investigative tool to enhance the capabilities of the police officer. Due to their enhanced olfactory capabilities, the police canine can assist officers in locating suspects that flee or hide and evidence that may help in the investigation of a crime. Police canine teams may be trained to locate explosives, narcotics, accelerants, cadavers or survivors of natural disasters and terrorist attacks.
Ero was born in Germany where he was bred for the specific purpose of serving as a police service canine. Through a series of tests, Ero was found to have the appropriate combination of drives and abilities to be a successful canine. It is estimated that only one out of every one hundred German Shepherd Dogs will be able to match the strict standards of the German National Police.
In order to remain proficient, the team must train weekly in areas such as obedience, tracking, detection and apprehension. The team utilizes other officers in order to serve as decoys for the canine. Wearing protective clothing, the decoy can simulate any situation that may be faced in the field. The team also trains weekly on scent work, utilizing decoys to simulate fleeing suspects and all types of explosives for detection. The Miami Police Department Canine Unit serves the entire community as the only explosives detection unit in Butler County.
Call-outs and requests for assistance are handled through the Miami University Police Communications Center 24 hours a day at (513) 529.2222. Questions about the canine unit, requests for demonstrations or other information should be addressed to Ptl. K. Hibbard.
Contact: Ptl. Keith Hibbard