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Boots, Police’s K9 Unit Dog Dies

THALEFANG CHARLES PINI BOTHOKO
Boots PIC: THALEFANG CHARLES
Botswana Police Service’s (BPS) most famous officer with four legs has died at the age of 10. Boots, the legendary black Labrador Retriever from Police’s K9 unit, last Tuesday succumbed to lymphoma.

BPS spokesperson, Assistant Commissioner Dipheko Motube said Boots has been unwell for a while. Motube said Boots was hospitalised in December and in January as the veterinarians tried in vain to treat the cancer.

Boots shot to fame in 2017 after the Police launched an anti-narcotics operation together with the Botswana Television (BTV). Every evening a series of sting operations were broadcast on the national television showing Boots successfully sniffing out hard drugs from suspects. The dog became an instant Internet sensation.

Social media loved it. Many users advocated for Boots to be handsomely rewarded for sniffing out drugs. They called on the police to “give it a yellow bone” as a reward for efficient job.

The police officer who gave Boots her shot to fame is Senior Assistant Commissioner Nunu Lesetedi. The Director of Crime Intelligence loved television and gave trending sound bites on national television during the dramatic drug bursts. “Boots rra e betsa go utlwala,” Lesetedi used to announce using ATI’s then trending hit song Khiring Khiring Khorong Khorong, when he was buoyed by big drug bursts.

Last week following the announcement of Boots’ death, Lesetedi told The Monitor the Police have lost a legend. “Re lathegetswe,” he said.

“This dog helped us to raise awareness of the extend of the

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drug problem in the country. People realised that we have a problem because of the sniffer dogs, especially Boots,” added Lesetedi.

Motube revealed that Boots was bought for R9, 000 from South Africa in 2013. The dog was trained in Botswana as a drug detection expert especially with dagga, cocaine, and heroine. The Police said Boots was an excellent working and breeding dog who produced competent dogs for the K9 Unit. At height of her fame, she was actually working with her three sons named, Blake, Brookie and Cater as well as daughter Faith. Boots has since added four more puppies and is survived by a total of eight puppies.

The police said Boots elevated the BPS’ reputation regarding their zero tolerance to drugs in the country. They were however quick to warn drug peddlers that the death of Boots does not mean that the K9 Unit is dead.

“Although in Boots we have lost an experienced dog, our K9 Unit has very competent drug detection dogs. And so those who think we would not be able to detect drugs must think again,” warned Motube.

Lesetedi also reiterated the warning saying although their star police dog is dead, “nothing has changed” as they will still be hard hitting on drug peddlers.



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