In an effort to keep things as predictable as possible, most police departments get their K-9 dogs from special breeders.
But in Round Rock, Texas, the K-9 team turned to a local animal shelter and found a stray named Harley they thought would fit in and become a great officer.
They were right. Not only did Harley learn everything he needed to help his fellow officers, he retired as a candidate for a national award.
In his five years on the force, Harley saw a lot of action. He tracked down drugs and evidence. He rode a helicopter to search for missing people during a flood.
And now, he’s one of 10 finalists for a Hero Dog Award from the group American Humane. If he wins, Harley will enjoy a red-carpet reception in Hollywood – which is a long way away from the shelter he called home just five years ago.