A police dog’s career has been saved after his bosses agreed to pay more than £3,000 for a cataract operation.
Ozzy’s the sniffer dog’s problems came to light when handler PC Paul Huggett noticed a “blue tinge” in his eyes.
After being taken to the vet, Ozzy was diagnosed with cataracts, meaning the canine officer would have to retire from duty.
Cataracts are cloudy patches that develop in the lens of the eye and can cause blurred or misty vision. If untreated the condition is likely to deteriorate.
However the police decided to give Ozzy another chance for his dedicated service and sanctioned an operation to remove the cataract from his eye, costing around £3,000.
PC Huggett said without the operation, the eight year-old hound would have had to retire from tracking down contraband, drugs, weapons and cash.
He added that although sniffer dogs primarily use their nose to search, they still need top vision to see where they are going.
The handler, who has trained Ozzy since the pooch was six months-old, said: “We had a meeting with the bosses and it was decided we would give him a chance.
“We did a lot of research about where he should go to get the best care and aftercare.
“He’s a very good dog, he’s a natural searcher.”
Ozzy, who is eight, is part of the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire dog unit spent six months off recovering from the operation.
He has now returned to work and on his first assignment found 50 rocks of crack cocaine in Peterborough.
PC Huggett added that when Ozzy retires he will stay with his family as a pet.