The Waxahachie Police Department has been raising funds for a second police dog since May 2019, and now they are about halfway to their goal.

In 2019, K9 officer Cross tragically died, leaving the department brokenhearted, police said. Though they still speak highly of Cross, they are in search of another dog to accompany K9 Hondo.

“When Cross passed away, our last canine, there was a lot of public outpouring and people wanting to help us out,” Chief Wade Goolsby said. “Our goal was to have two K9 officers in the department.”

Hondo is a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois. He has been a part of the department since last year, with handler Derek Behringer.

“The best thing about the K-9 program for me is watching the dog work,” Behringer said. “These dogs are incredible animals. Hondo loves coming to work everyday, and I love having him with me.”

Hondo was bought with grant money that the police department acquired. However, a grant of that size isn’t easy to obtain, so the department is raising funds for a second dog.

“I’m hopeful that we can continue to move forward and acquire a second dog for the department,” Goolsby shared. “A good dog runs probably between $12,000 and $15,000.”

Goolsby has an ongoing gofundme that has currently raised $2,755, to go along with other donations.

“We’ve gotten some money that’s come in outside of the gofundme account, and we’ve got about half of what we need," Goolsby said. “So I’m optimistic we’ll be able to get the rest of it and acquire another dog.”

Currently, Hondo and Behringer are the only K-9 team in the department.

“Being the only K-9 team right now, I am on call 24/7 and I try my best to always be available to assist in any way I can,” Behringer said. “But, there are times when I take my family to do things and have not been available to assist. Having another dog would guarantee each shift would have access to a dog a majority of the time.”

To donate to the police department and help them raise funds for a new police dog, visit www.gofundme.com/waxahachie-police-k9-program.