BUFFALO — Erie County Sheriff Timothy B. Howard recently announced his office received funding from the Erie County Sheriff’s 21st Century Foundation to acquire Leiche, 2 1/2-year-old cadaver canine.
The new cadaver canine will work with an existing Erie County Sheriff K-9 handler. Therefore, no additional equipment will be needed. Cadaver dogs are trained to locate human remains buried by detecting scents specifically from human cells, called volatile fatty acids. The canine is trained to detect human scent by using placenta, blood, teeth, human fat and soil from where a person has decomposed, then rewarded for detecting human scent.
Leiche was a rescue dog and is being trained by a police dog trainer in Ontario, Canada. Sometime in November, Leiche will complete training and gain National Association of Professional Canine Handlers’ (NAPCH) cadaver certification then join the Sheriffs’ Office.
The Sheriff’s new K-9 will become one of only a few NAPCH cadaver certified canines in the northeast and will provide assistance to law enforcement agencies throughout Erie County, surrounding counties, and area search and rescue organizations.