Retiring K9 Jago took a bite out of crime

Beaverton Police K9 Officer Jago has collared 122 suspects.

2015-11-11 -- As a trainee, the German shepherd born in the Czech Republic was known as Mr. Perfect because he did everything so well. It probably didn't hurt that Magnus' own parents were dog trainers and he had his eyes on a K9 handler job since joining the force.

But a year into the job, Jago was chasing a suspect and jumped over a 2-foot wall, which turned out to have a 6-foot drop on the far side. Jago landed hard on pavement and injured a leg.

A week later, the dog could hardly walk. A year's worth of veterinary visits didn't solve the problem until he became the first dog in Oregon to undergo a stem cell replacement therapy previously used on race horses, Magnus said.

The treatment worked like a charm and just one year later Jago won the agility part of the Washington County Sheriff's Office's annual Police K9 trials.

"The fact that he worked this long has been awesome," Magnus said.

Only recently has Jago, who is now 11 1/2, started slowing down. He wore his uniform one last time for the council meeting. He will live out his lfe as Magnus' companion dog.

Magnus himself is moving into a new role as well, becoming the Beaverton Police Department's first full-time high-tech detective working closely with the FBI on cyber crimes.

For Magnus, it feels right that he is transitioning from barks to bytes.

"It would be hard to replace him," he said, "because he's such a perfect dog."

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