TALLMADGE — The Tallmadge Police Department’s K-9 program received a financial boost, courtesy of the Ravenna Kennel Club.

Jean Highlands, treasurer of the club, attended City Council Feb. 13 on behalf of the Ravenna Kennel Club to present a $4,000 check for the new police K-9 officer. The Ravenna Kennel Club made the donation “so he can get his new dog soon,” Highlands said of Officer Nate Ickes, one of the department’s K-9 officers. 

“A K-9 unit is mostly funded by donations,” Ickes said. “It can be expensive. The money goes a long way.”

Tallmadge Police Chief Ron Williams said the $4,000 donation will go to help pay for Axel’s replacement, the K-9 officer who died of cancer in December. The cost of a new K-9 officer is between $7,000 and $8,000, he said.

The Ravenna Kennel Club has not donated to Tallmadge police before, he said.

“We’ve received donations from the Rubber City Kennel Club but this is the first from Ravenna Kennel Club and we’re very appreciative,” Williams said.

People have been generous toward the Tallmadge K-9 officers, and Williams said he has checks and cash ranging from $20 to $100 from individuals and a couple thousand dollars from an anonymous donor.

“We are so grateful for the continued support we receive from the community for our K9 program,” he said.

Gannett reporter April Helms contributed to this story.

Gannett reporter Laura Freeman can be reached at 330-541-9434 or lfreeman@recordpub.com.