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K-9 Lars retires; K-9 Bravo joins the Columbia County Sheriff's Office under handler Benjamin Krueger.

COURTESY PHOTO: COLUMBIA COUNTY - Columbia County Sheriff Brian Pixley and new K-9 Bravo demonstrate the police dogs use at the Columbia County Fair last week.The Columbia County sheriff's K-9 officer retired earlier this month after more than seven years with the sheriff's office.

K-9 Lars, an 8½-year-old Belgian Malinois, was retired due to a medical issue, according to authorities.

"Lars has been adopted by a local family and will be spending his retirement in the community that he knows and loves," the Sheriff's Office said in a statement.

Columbia County Deputy Benjamin Krueger, the department's K-9 handler, already has his next canine partner. Krueger has started training the new dog, K-9 Bravo.COURTESY PHOTO: COLUMBIA COUNTY - Columbia County Deputy Benjamin Kreuger is K-9 Bravo's handler and human partner.

Bravo is a well-traveled 1½-year-old German shepherd. He was born in Romania and did his police K-9 training in the Netherlands, according to the press release.

Columbia County purchased Bravo "using generous donations from community members and local businesses," according to the Sheriff's Office.

After an additional six-week training process, authorities said, Bravo will start working with the Sheriff's Office on "suspect apprehension, tracking, and article and building searches."

Krueger joined the Columbia County Sheriff's Office in July 2021. He previously worked for the Klamath Falls Police Department.

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