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GLADSTONE – A special fundraiser is underway in Delta County.

Officer Ryan Peterson with Gladstone Public Safety is raising money for the department’s first-ever K-9 unit. After some thought and planning, the department has decided to start a fundraiser.

“The rise of drug activity not only in this area but also across the nation,” said Ryan Peterson, Public Safety Officer with Gladstone Public Safety. “It’s well known that drugs have been replacing or taking over alcohol so my nose as a human being cannot beat a dog for that.”

One local business decided to get in on the effort by selling drinkware with specially made logos for the occasion.

“I come from a police family- I married a police officer, my dad’s a police officer,” said Jess Groleau, Co-Owner of Blue 6 Laser Engraving Company. “Then I saw they needed the funds for a K-9 so I came up with a logo for them and decided that we would donate 100% of all of the profits from anything we sold with that logo to donate towards our K-9.”

The public safety department wouldn’t be the only ones benefiting from the K-9 unit, either. Community outreach would also be an essential part of the program, with visits to schools and foster homes.

“It’s also going to be integrated into the community as far as showing that we are humans and that they can talk to us very easily,” said Peterson. “A dog will help bridge that gap.”

Peterson says the fundraising effort is at the halfway point and are still actively fundraising. If you would like to donate to the fundraiser, you can write out a check to the Gladstone Public Safety K-9 Fund. You can also check out the group’s Facebook page here.