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On The Light Side

July 28, 1986

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) _ Police officers have taken up foreign languages so they can talk to their dogs.

Four of the department’s six police dogs don’t understand English.

Three of the dogs are German shepherds trained in Germany and know only German commands. And the department has a Belgian malinois who was trained by Dutch police and responds to commands in Dutch.

The canine division specializes in sniffing out drugs and finding suspects inside buildings.

Division supervisor Sgt. Joel Block said the department used to accept donated, American-born German shepherds but found that sometimes the dogs wouldn’t measure up to the police department’s canine standards.

″The dogs selected in European countries are trained to do one thing only, and that is be police dogs,″ Block said.


RICHFIELD, Minn. (AP) - It was just a leisurely afternoon ride in a pickup truck for Tyrone, a 600-pound Siberian tiger. But astonished onlookers, unaware that Tyrone was minus his claws and fangs, quickly summoned police.

″I was hoping it was secured to the back of the truck,″ Officer Glenn Mork said after retrieving Tyrone on Friday. ″I think the kitty would have done anything he would have ... pleased.″

Tyrone was indeed secured during his outing with a leather leash.

Mork and two other officers stopped the truck, whose driver, Thomas Malz of Hutchinson, said he had been looking for a friend’s house. Passers-by stopped to gawk while officer Dan Mead covered the 2 1/2 -year-old tiger with his shotgun.

Police arrested Malz, 25, for driving with a suspended license and having an outstanding traffic warrant. But the officers said they found no problem with his ownership of the tiger.

Tyrone was taken to the Minnesota Zoo, where veterinarian Frank Wright found him stretched out on the ground in a cage, sleeping in the afternoon sun.

″He’s pretty mellow,″ Wright said. ″He doesn’t look like he’s missed too many meals.″

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