Snieper, a 70-pound Belgian Malinois, joined the Mt. Lebanon Police Department in 2014, after arriving from his native Holland and undergoing about 18 months of training. He is proficient in suspect apprehension, tracking and searching for illegal drugs. Upon arrival, he began mentoring Officer Ben Himan. The two remain partners.
Tell us a little bit about training.
About four times a month, I go to training with some of my other K9 friends. We like to play hide and seek a lot. My best friend, you might know him as Officer Ben, he will play a game where he sends another human into the woods, through a parking lot, or to another building. When he tells me to, I then get to go and find the human. When I find the human, I get to play with my favorite ball!!
Sometimes, Officer Ben hides stuff in cars, buildings, lockers, suitcases, and occasionally in high places like ceilings or very low in places, like a car wheel. If I locate the hidden items, I get to play with my favorite ball!! It is fun to play these hiding games because guess what? I always get to play with my favorite ball!!!
Are you always on duty?
I get to play with my best friend, usually for about eight hours a day, sometimes longer, I’m not sure, I can’t really tell time, and our schedule is always changing. If I am on duty, we walk and drive around Mt. Lebanon. Frequently people will see me and want to pet me. It is important to ask Officer Ben if it is OK to pet me. But be ready, I like to lean on you, to show you how much I enjoy being petted.
When we get home, I get to see my other buddies Jax and Max. They are humans, but they are tiny humans. It is fun when Officer Ben and my tiny humans will throw a ball, frisbee, or a kong toy. I can do this for hours. These are some of my best toys, almost like my favorite ball!! After all that, I have a bed, and I will go lay down, or if I am not tired, I will follow Officer Ben around the house, everywhere.
What is something readers may not know about you?
I am fluent in three languages, Dutch, English, and something Officer Ben speaks.
I was born in Holland, and I am a Belgian Malinois, not a German Shepherd. A Malinois is like a German Shepherd, but faster, smarter, and better looking.
Who’s a good boy?
I am, I am… I bet you thought I was going to mention playing with my favorite ball!!