Sniffer dog Simba, a 10-year-old black Labrador Retriever, succumbed to liver cancer at the police dog squad unit in Vellore on Tuesday.
An expert in crime detection and narcotics, Simba, who was an active member in the squad, was born in December 2012 and was brought as a two-month-old pup to the dog squad in the fort town.
Subsequently, he underwent a year-long training at the Madras City Police Dog Squad in Chennai before being inducted into service. His handler was constable M. Sasikumar, who was inconsolable on seeing Simba fall unconscious in the training area of the squad around 10.15 a.m.
“Simba was an expert in explosives detection and narcotics identification. He helped us crack at least 250 cases during his service years. We really miss him,” S. Rajesh Kannan, SP (Vellore) told The Hindu.
Along with other police personnel, Mr. Kannan paid his last respects to Simba at the squad. Simba’s sniffing skills were in full display on December 15, 2021, when he was taken to Jos Alukkas, a gold jewellery retail chain showroom on Katpadi Road in Vellore where 16 kg of gold and diamond jewellery were stolen the previous night.
Initial tracking by Simba, the police said, was vital in getting an idea of the suspect and his motives.