BEND, OR -- After four years on the job, K9 Ladybug retired in December 2022. A drug detection K9, Ladybug is a 9-year-old Belgian Malinois. She trained as a passive alert detection dog, meaning she sits and stays or lays and stares when she detects the source of narcotic odors.
She and her handler, Detective Rob Pennock, completed an initial 240 hours of training at the Washington State Department of Corrections Narcotic Dog Academy. She was certified in Washington, Oregon and California and never failed a certification test, passing them in March and April of 2019, January, April and July of 2020 and April and November of 2021. In 2022, the pair joined the Central Oregon Drug Enforcement team.
In 43 months working, from March 2019 through November 2022, Ladybug was deployed 505 times. She seized 14,804 grams of methamphetamine, 10,959 grams of heroin, 3,588 grams of cocaine and 4,317 fentanyl pills during that time. In addition to her drug seizures, Ladybug also recovered $18,400 in cash, 13 illegal guns and was part of 233 arrests.
Of note, Ladybug’s role on patrol decreased dramatically after a 2021 Oregon Court of Appeals case changed how drug detection dogs could be used on traffic stops.
Over her tenure, Bend Police say Ladybug was an invaluable member of the team. Her handler, Detective Rob Pennock, now works with K9 Bonnie.