He put his nose down and took off.
"He just blew my mind away," said the dog's handler, Monroe police officer Tom Osendorf.
Bismarck, a German shepherd police dog, died earlier this week after battling discospondylitis, a type of spinal meningitis.
The dog started showing symptoms on April 18 and quickly deteriorated. He lost movement in his hind legs.
"That's not the quality of life I wanted for him," Osendorf said.
Bizmarck was euthanized Monday, Monroe police spokeswoman Debbie Willis said.
Now the department is mourning the loss.
"It's very sad and it was a very tough decision to put him down," she said.
Bismarck joined Monroe police in 1999 to help to track down bad guys. He was trained to use his highly sensitive nose to follow criminals when they tried to hide from police.
The dog, one of four on the Monroe force, worked for many years with courage and confidence, Willis said.
When Bismarck was working, he seemed ferocious, Osendorf said.
"Nobody got close to my car without my knowing about it," he said.
But at home, Bismarck was "a big Marmaduke," Osendorf said.
Police dogs in Snohomish County often are called to assist in searches by other police departments. Over the years, Bismarck worked with the Snohomish and King county sheriff's deputies and many other police agencies. He received many letters of appreciation during his years of police service, Willis said.
"Rest well, K9 Bismarck," she said. "Your sacrifice and exemplary service will always be remembered."
Reporter Jackson Holtz: 425-339-3437 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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