DENVER - Colorado's Senate has approved a dog-protection measure to require new training for law enforcement on how to handle canine encounters in the line of duty.
The bill’s sponsors, Sen. David Balmer, R-Arapahoe County, and Sen. Lucia Guzman, D-Denver, and Rep. Lois Court, D-Denver, and Rep. Don Coram, R-Dolores County, cited alarming statistics which show that 37 dogs have been shot by police officers in Colorado over the last five years.
The bill appears to be the first of its kind in the nation. It was inspired by high-profile cases of questionable pet killings by Colorado officers.
The measure requires sheriff and police departments to offer three hours of online training for deputies and officers on how to recognize dog behaviors and employ nonlethal methods to control them. The proposal won initial approval Monday on an unrecorded voice vote in the state Senate.
“I think it will be good to have a statewide standard on how the training is done,” Balmer said.T
The bill now goes to the state House.
Senate Bill 226: http://goo.gl/YIyKv