Stabbed police dog Finn to retire
A police dog who nearly lost his life after being stabbed in the line of duty is retiring.
After seven years of loyal service, German shepherd PD Finn is leaving the force a week shy of his eighth birthday.
He made headlines around the world after he and his handler PC Dave Wardell were stabbed while apprehending an alleged armed robber in Stevenage in October.
Both recovered and went back to active duty at Christmas.
While this marks the end of their working relationship, Finn will be staying with PC Wardell and his family, which includes three children, several dogs, a cat and a parrot.
"He's making the transition from Police Dog Finn to pet dog Finn," PC Wardell said.
Retirement for the active animal will be "tough", he admitted.
During his rehabilitation Finn would sit by the door and wait for his master to come home.
"It's very rare that the house is empty, though, and on my days off I'll keep his training going, to keep him fit," PC Wardell said.
First on the agenda, though, is a family holiday to the seaside in Norfolk.
"Police dogs aren't allowed out of their home county unless on official duty, and as Hertfordshire is land-locked, it will be a new experience.
"He saw the sea once - for about 20 minutes - when we were on a course in Wales," he added.
Retired police dogs do not always stay with their handlers, but there was "never a chance" Finn would not stay with PC Wardell.
"He means the world to me. He's like a son.
"I think I've leant on him for emotional and physical support especially after what happened, because he did save my life.
"I'll miss him immensely at work, but now we'll get to go away together and have lots of new adventures."
31 Mar 2017
- From the section Beds, Herts & Bucks