The Gurnee Police Department announced they are adding two new police canines to their department and are seeking students to help name the dogs.
Gurnee Police Department Public Information Officer Shawn Gaylor said that the new canines will arrive in the coming weeks, with an anticipated swearing-in occurring in June.
A partnership with Gurnee Mills and Six Flags Great America allowed the department to continue the canine program after the previous two canines, Bear and Hunter, retired last year, Gaylor said.
“We are grateful and excited for the opportunity to continue our K9 program with the addition of two new canines,” said Gurnee Police Chief Brian Smith.
“Police canines play a critical role in serving our community and protecting the residents and visitors who enjoy year-round attractions like Gurnee Mills and Six Flags Great America. We are eager to hear from our local students who are helping us select the perfect names for our canines,” Smith said.
The new German shepherds are currently undergoing training at TOPS Kennel in Grayslake.
TOPS has been training police canines at their facility for many years, Gaylor said. There are upwards of 40 police canines on the street throughout Lake, Cook, McHenry and Kenosha counties trained through TOPS.
The canines and their handlers will initially undergo eight weeks of training, earn their certification and receive continual follow-up training through TOPS for various patrol functions, including article and building searches, narcotics detection and tracking capabilities.
The police department is asking for Gurnee school students to help with selecting names for the dogs.
Gurnee students currently enrolled in kindergarten up to 12th grade can participate in the canine naming contest by submitting their name recommendations through this form.
The winning entries, selected by the Gurnee Police Department, will have the opportunity to meet the canines at their official swearing-in ceremony.
Submissions will be accepted until March 31.