Nothing is more heart-stopping for a parent than a missing child.
A K9 police dog, Dutch, and his handler in Maine are being praised for quickly locating a missing kindergartener on Sept. 21. The child was found shoeless, crying in the woods outside the school, but otherwise unharmed.
Soon after being found, the child was reunited with her parents.
When the child went missing during recess at her school in Lyman, the school called the police. Soon afterward, the York County Sheriff’s Office requested K9 Dutch and Trooper Zachary Fancy on the scene.
Dutch was able to pick up a scent from a jacket left behind by the missing child, and he led Trooper Fancy right into the woods. According to a Facebook post by the Maine State Police, after tracking for roughly half a mile, Dutch began displaying signs that the child wasn’t far away.
Following the scent through the trees, Dutch soon found the child, shoeless, sitting on a rock and crying.
After troopers brought the child out of the woods, she was quickly reunited with her grateful parents.
The local community praised Dutch and Fancy, commenting on the police department’s post.
“Great work, Trooper Zachary and Dutch,” one post read. “Thank you both for your service!”
This isn’t the first time the Maine State Police and K9 units have been called to the scene to locate children who’ve gone missing in the woods.
Last year, two 11-year-old children wandered into the trees in Plymouth, Maine, disappeared from their own backyard one Saturday night around 6:30 p.m., and ended up spending all night in the woods.
The parents noticed the boys were missing about 20 minutes after they went outside to play, and when they were unable to locate the children, they called the police.
K9s were called to the scene. Eventually, the boys were found at around 2:30 a.m. on Sunday. They were safely returned to their parents, unharmed.
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