SIOUX FALLS AREA, S.D. (KELO) — When you work in law enforcement, you have to be ready for anything. But even men and women wearing the badge are surprised sometimes.
That’s exactly what happened in the South Dakota Highway Patrol recently.
K9 Kobra is a new face at South Dakota Highway Patrol.
The agency purchased her from its vendor in Alabama this summer and brought her to South Dakota.
“She outperformed all the other dogs we were evaluating,” SD Department of Public Safety Secretary Craig Price said.
The HP knew she would make an excellent drug detection dog. But what they didn’t know: Kobra was pregnant.
The surprise was revealed when she gave birth to eight puppies at a kennel while her handler was working the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.
“You can imagine the surprise we had with these new puppies and how did this happen? How did we buy a dog and she’s pregnant and we didn’t know she was pregnant?” Price said.
Kobra never showed any physical signs of being pregnant, and the babies couldn’t be seen on an x-ray.
Now, the pups are nearly 8 weeks old and living with a trooper.
“They’re happy; they’re healthy; they’re excited,” Price said.
These puppies will soon be moved out of state to a professional training facility. That’s where their next steps in life will be determined.
“It’s fun. It’s a lot of work though and I don’t know that we want to be in the puppy business. We’ll stick to grown dogs,” SD Highway Patrol Asst. Superintendent Maj. Jason Husby said.
Some may have what it takes to follow in mom’s footsteps.
“I don’t know if we’ll be able to stay in touch with them as they grow. It’d be kind of fun if we were able to, but nonetheless we’re pretty excited about moving on to the next phase,” Price said.
Now that Kobra is no longer on puppy patrol, she can soon start training for her new role: keeping South Dakota safe.
Price says it’s likely Kobra became pregnant overseas before she was brought to the U.S.