RIVERSIDE, Calif. - The Riverside County Sheriff's Department has a new nose to help point them in the right direction and sniff out the bad guys.
Windy is a three month old female bloodhound, and the newest member of the department's well established canine team.
"It's a family," said Captain Geoff Raya. "All of these 28 canines with Riverside County Sheriff's Department are my family members."
Deputy Robert Ochoa will be Windy's partner and handler. According to Ochoa, she was the pick of the litter.
"Windy stuck out from the whole group," he said. "She showed very little fear, she seemed most curious about the new people around, the surroundings, and seeing where everybody's at."
All important factors for the job Windy will do -- track wanted criminals and missing people by their scent. Although the bloodhounds and other tracking dogs don't always solve the crime, they point officers in the right direction.
One of the most important things Windy will learn is that when her work harness goes on, it means business.
"We've got a very passionate handler, which is where it starts," according to Officer Travis Shows who's been working with his dog, Maddy, for three years.
Officer Shows can't imagine working without his bloodhound.
"Maddy has been trued and tested and she is a great companion and a great work partner," he added.
As far as when Windy will be out policing the streets -- training can last anywhere from six months to a year, depending on the dog.
"When we have multiple teams in the county of Riverside the citizens are the ones that benefit from that," said Shows. "Suspects hate us, and the family member that lose people love us."
All of the bloodhounds are based at the Cabazon Station. They wanted her name to be fitting of the geographical location. So, they chose Windy!
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