Clay County K-9 makes career change to avoid retirement

Published: Sep. 8, 2023 at 7:08 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 11, 2023 at 9:32 AM CDT
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CLAY COUNTY, Mo. (KCTV) - A K-9 with the Clay County Sheriff’s Office has officially become a school pet. A career change thanks to an almost forced retirement.

Csibi is a 6-year-old Dutch Shepherd who was trained to detect marijuana, but when the drug was legalized in Missouri, his handler, Deputy Andrew Iggy, didn’t want to retire such a young K-9.

“So, we came up with this idea to try and put him in schools and see what happens,” Iggy said. “He comes in, and he’s been nice and friendly with teachers and students. He likes a lot of attention, so he’s been doing very well.”

This year at Maplewood Elementary School, they took it a step further with a reward program.

“If they behave all week, then they can spend a Friday with the dog,” Iggy said.

Principal Nick Pettit said having Csibi and Deputy Iggy in the school has made a huge difference in the classroom and beyond.

“As we know, pets are a great way to develop those skills of empathy and to have that sensitivity to care for others, and if we can care for our pets, we can care for our classmates and others in the school,” Pettit said.

Pettit said the program also helps build a positive relationship with students and law enforcement.

“It allows kids to be with a K-9 in a positive way and with law enforcement in a positive way,” Pettit said. “It gets kids ready for the school day, cheers them up, and makes them happy.”

If needed, Csibi can go out on drug-related calls.