Barack Obama may be reaching the end of his second term as President but that doesn't mean that security is any less important now. Keeping the First Family safe is of the upmost importance, as much now as it ever has been – and will continue to be once a new President is appointed after the elections later this month. While the presence of Secret Service agents is required, and well documented, when it comes to keeping the President and his family safe while they're out and about, have you ever noticed the four-legged agents that often accompany members of this elite team? The Secret Service's K-9 unit was officially launched in 1975, introducing a new dimension to a team that serves to protect the country and its esteemed leaders.
There's a chance you've seen these proud pooches and their handlers in the background on numerous occasions, but perhaps their role never crossed your mind before. All of that is about to change, thanks to a brand new book released in October titled Secret Service Dogs: The Heroes Who Protect the President of the United States. Written by Maria Goodavage, the book aims to lift the lid on the bravery and dedication of the dogs that work on the frontline for the President and his family, and those who have manned the Oval Office in the years since 1975. The book celebrates a handful of four-legged agents, including the following canine companions tasked with protecting the First Family:
- Dyson, a liver-and-white spaniel that scours the streets surrounding the White House in search of devices and suspicious packages.
- Bomb-sniffing dog Rex is a big softy at heart, although you’d never know it if you saw him out and about, nose down and on duty.
- Roadee hates being left home alone, but his unwavering dedication when he's at work as a scent dog proves that he's committed to the cause.
- Hurricane (pictured) became a hero after he gave chase to an intruder found on the lawns of the White House. Despite being punched repeatedly during the frantic chase he didn't give up; his reward of belly rubs was well worth it.
It's clear to see from this canine crew that Secret Service dogs can vary in breed, and that they work numerous roles all in the name of protection. Their loyalty to this country is clear, so do spare a thought for the pups, and their handlers, the next time you see the First Family in the media.