Los Angeles Police Department officers go beyond the call of duty to help save the lives of animals in need. Even LAPD Chief Charlie Beck has horses and a handful of dogs and cats waiting for him at home, and he's just one example of an officer coming to the rescue of a four-legged friend. Robert Kovacik reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013.
“To protect and to serve” – it’s the motto of the LAPD, and it applies to more than just people.
The Police Department is working to make LA known as the “City of Compassion,” which includes making the safety of animals a priority.
For example, one detective solved a dognapping in April. Another lieutenant saved a kitty running through traffic. And in October, an officer came to the aid of an abused donkey.
LA Police Chief Charlie Beck tells NBC4 that compassion towards animals is expected.
“Cops become cops because they have a big hearts,” Beck said.
The love for animals extends beyond the job for some officers. Beck himself has horses, dogs and cats at home. “(I have) lots. Lots of animals,” Beck said.
LAPD Commander Andy Smith tells NBC4 that more often than not, many of the animals rescued are adopted by the officer who rescued it, including Smith himself.
Melya Kaplan, founder of Voice for Animals, is documenting the LAPD’s efforts in an annual calendar. “The proceeds are going to vet care, spay and neuter, microchip, so we can save more lives,” Kaplan said.
“A lot of policing is building public faith, right? And I think people connect with a mutual love for animals and respect for living beings,” Beck said.
For more information on the “Rescued by LAPD 2014” calendar, click here.