The newest member of the Watertown Police Department has four legs, fur, and is just 11 months old. His name is Kato, and he’s the first K-9 on the force since the 1990s.
The German Shepard puppy and his handler, officer Andrew Civetti will be trained at the Boston Police Training Academy in Jamaica Plain over the coming months.
Kato will protect Civetti and other officers, and search for missing people, suspects and drug drugs, Civetti told Watertown Cable Access’ Watertown Weekly News.
“He’ll be able to use his nose to find tracks and those sorts of things,” Civetti said.
He was named Kato after an online naming contest run by the WPD. The name in Latin means “all-knowing.”
Watertown has a long history of police dogs. It was the first town in Massachusetts to have one, back in the 1960s, and at times the WPD had multiple K-9s at the same time, according to Watertown Police Lt. James O’Connor. However, the use of dogs ended in the 1990s.
Kato was brought onto the force with the help of a grant from the Stanton Foundation.
He will live with Civetti, in a kennel built at his home. It didn’t take long for the bond between the new partners to grow.
“In those four short days, it’s already apparent — to me at least — that he knows who I am,” Civetti said shortly after being paired with Kato. “He knows I’m his handler. It’s very unique to see that bond grow so quickly.”
Find out more about Kato and see the entire Watertown Cable piece by clicking here.