German Shepherd K9 Joins Santa Fe County Corrections Team

Editor | - May 21, 2013

Meet Bixi Von Der Critterden, a 19-month old German Shepherd

Santa Fe County Corrections Division recently added a four-legged detection dog to the Adult Detention Facility. Bixi Von Der Critterden is a 19-month old German Shepherd and American second-generation service dog who now spends her time diligently sniffing for illegal drugs in the Santa Fe County Adult Detention Facility.

"Santa Fe County Corrections Department took a vested interest in obtaining a K9 dog and handler to reduce the dangerous contraband and drugs that are introduced into our facility," said Warden Mark Gallegos. "The intent of the K9 team was to be a preventative and proactive tool measure and not reactive. By obtaining a K9 we have definitely have deterrence with contraband that is coming into our facility. Bixi has been working for about a month and hit the ground running by performing her duties with excellence."

Bixi had to complete and pass a pre-test before she was accepted into the K9 training program. Graduation was by certification of the completion of the minimum requirements of a K9 service dog which consisted of 200 hours of K9 Operations. She completed her K9 Training with Kevin Sheldahl, who runs and certifies K9 Services for Federal Agencies as well as for the New Mexico Department of Corrections. She must have documentation of working a minimum of five hours a day to maintain her performance standards for annual certifications. Bixi is also working to obtain an accreditation from the National Narcotic Detector Dog Association (NNDA), which should be completed within the next year.

“The more diligent the training the further effective the team will become to combat the introductions of Contraband into our facility," Gallegos said. "The K9 team is trained in conducting random searches and searches of the entire facility and is an asset to Santa Fe County Corrections."

The mission of our team K9 and handler is to maintain a drug-free facility for the safety of the inmates, staff and community.

From a Santa Fe County media release