Retiring Drug Dog Detected $6.4 Million In Meth Coming Into Guam Over Career

Toya honored for 'protecting our island community from the perils of the drug

By Steve Limtiaco

HAGÅTÑA, Guam (Pacific Daily News, June 28, 2017) – Retired Customs drug detection dog Toya, during more than six years of service, stopped more than $6.2 million in methamphetamine from entering Guam, “protecting our island community from the perils of the drug,” said Guam Customs and Quarantine Agency spokesman Jessi Jon Santos.

Toya, a black female Labrador retriever, was euthanized last weekend after concerned residents reported seeing an injured dog in Umatac.

Volunteers working with the nonprofit animal shelter Guam Animals in Need found the dog after searching the beach at Umatac Bay for two hours.

According to GAIN, Toya had a severe injury on her left side, possibly a machete cut, and could not be saved. The dog would have turned 13 years old this week.

Toya was retired from the agency on Nov. 10, 2015, and was released into the care of her handler, according to Santos.

The Rainbow Bridge Pet Crematory received Toya Tuesday afternoon, Santos said, and her remains will come to the agency. GAIN has said a ceremony will be held for Toya and other dogs from the Customs K-9 unit.

"We are extremely grateful to GAIN's volunteers who were compassionate towards Toya in her final hours as well as to the Rainbow Bridge Pet Crematory for their services," said Customs Director James T. McDonald.

Santos said Toya's handler, who she went to live with when she retired, was leaving the island for work and intended to take her with him. Santos said the handler was asked by a relative if he would leave her with them instead.

“My understanding is that the handler believed he was leaving Toya in a safe and loving home where she could retire in peace,” Santos said.

He said Toya’s new home was in Umatac, but not in the area where she was found, so it is unclear why she was there. According to Pacific Daily News files, Toya was acquired from Australia.

Pacific Daily News
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