The Beatles famously sang, “I get by with a little help from my friends.” At the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the Law Enforcement team would probably agree, especially when those friends are of the four-legged variety. Every day the Kansas City Fed’s officers work with two K-9 officers, Ruger and Mac, who add another level of protection for the Bank.
Not just any canine can serve in law enforcement. Ruger and Mac received several months of training on detection before ever working at the Kansas City Fed. Upon arrival, 16 hours of monthly training is required; sometimes this takes place onsite at the Bank, and other times the dogs work with outside agencies, such as the Kansas City Police Department. All this training goes to ensure Ruger and Mac have their noses in tip top shape for monitoring all the armored trucks, freight and mail deliveries that arrive at the Bank daily.
Since 2007 the Kansas City Fed has worked with canines to help ensure the safety of the facility and its employees. Here’s a profile of these K-9 officers:
Breed: Black Lab
Mac joined the Kansas City Fed in 2017. Born in South America, Mac was trained in the United States before coming to the Bank. When it comes to his job, Mac never seems to get a case of the Mondays. “He gets right in the car every morning and is excited to go to work,” said his handler, Kim.
She describes Mac as a playful, free spirit with a sensitive side. “He has a ball he loves to play with at home. He has a stubborn side, too, and will let you know if you hurt his feelings.” Mac also has a passion for food and is very vocal if his breakfast or dinner is delayed.
Reflecting on the opportunity to work with Mac and the Bank’s retired K-9 dog Chanou, Kim says becoming a K-9 handler is extremely rewarding and boasts about having the best job in the Bank. “I’ve always loved dogs and the opportunity came up at the Bank to be a K-9 handler so I applied for it,” she said. “I can’t imagine working without a dog at my side now.”
Breed: Yellow Lab
Ruger has been part of the Kansas City Fed Law Enforcement team for two years. Born in Washington and trained in North Carolina, he joined the Bank at three years old.
His handler, Kenneth, says Ruger has never met another person or animal he didn’t like. “He is just a friend to everyone and everything.”
While he’ll retrieve anything, Ruger’s favorite toy is a Frisbee. “He’ll go and go with that Frisbee and then he’ll just lay down in his kennel to let you know he’s done,” he laughed. “He also looks forward to his nightly treat, he won’t let you forget it.”
Kenneth was inspired to apply for the K-9 officer position after passing up an opportunity to be a dog handler in the military and later regretting it. “It’s hard to imagine going to work now without a dog,” he says. “It’s like putting on a pair of boots, it becomes part of your daily habit. He’s a constant companion.”