WATCH: Meet Officer Savage, the dogged drug-busting canine

2019-07-25 15:59
Constable Mosuli Faku with K9 officer Savage. (Screengrab)

Constable Mosuli Faku with K9 officer Savage. (Screengrab)

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The Cape Town Metro Police Department has a secret weapon in the fight against drugs, and his name is K9 Officer Savage. 

Savage - a Sable German Shepherd - and his handler Constable Mosuli Faku, have together found drugs with an estimated street value of R160 000 in the past six months.

Among them were packets of mandrax, cocaine, tik and dagga.

The two were recently honoured with a service medal for their hard work.

They are part of the K9 unit situated in Parow, which consists of 25 dogs working to sniff out narcotics, explosives and even help find missing persons.

Savage was partnered with Faku three years ago as a puppy.

"Training him was a challenge because he was still a puppy. He was still playful. He didn't know anything about sniffing, but we worked hard every day," Faku tells News24.

Every day starts the same for the pair: Faku checks in with his superiors and gets his assignment for the day.

Then he goes to find his friend in the dog kennels situated at the back of their offices.

Savage is excited to see him and runs in circles in anticipation.

'I have a love for dogs'

Faku does a quick kennel inspection and then enters to check on Savage. 

"When inspecting my canine, I have to check if he didn't get injured during the night," Faku explains.

He then checks for ticks, before moving to the face and paws.

"You check the ears, eyes and nose. Once the nose is dry, that means the dog is sick," he continues.

Once the inspection is done, they head to the field for a some exercise and then "we are ready to go to work now".

Savage K9

Constable Faku with K9 officer Savage at the dog kennels in Parow. (Screengrab)

                                                                                                           

Faku's love for dogs started at a young age back in the Eastern Cape, where he used to take care of his uncle's 12 dogs.

He said he always loved dogs, but unfortunately he couldn't have one of his own when he moved to Cape Town in 1997.

"I have a love for dogs, but the situation here doesn't allow me to have one… landlords say no pets," he told News24 while driving to a raid in Parow's central business district.

Faku's colleague radioed him to approach the building from a different side, in order to maximise the element of surprise.

Once they entered the building, they let Savage lead the way.

Despite the darkness and the rainwater leaking through the roof, it was mere minutes before Savage was scratching away at one corner.

'This is where I am going to take my pension'

Constable Faku explained it meant he had found something, and indeed he had. 

Another officer came to assist and pulled out a bag from under the carpet with smaller packets inside.

Faku identified it as tik or crystal meth.

Savage then sniffed his way to the next corner, and every door and passageway he could find.

The team found more packets of tik and a few empty ones.

The contraband was handed in at the Parow Police Station and booked as "abandoned", since no suspects were arrested.

Faku said he wouldn't want to trade his job for anything else and hopes to move up in the ranks of the K9 unit.

"This is where I am going to take my pension. I don't have dreams of moving," he said.

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Read more on:    saps  |  cape town  |  narcotics  |  animals
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