Dunn County Sheriff’s Office introduces new canine unit

The Dunn County Sheriff’s Department has recently added a new employee to its force: K-9 Rex, the “drug dog.”


Dunn County Herald

Posted November 2, 2012

The Dunn County Sheriff’s Department has recently added a new employee to its force: K-9 Rex, the “drug dog.” Working under the guidance of Dunn County Deputy Travis Carlson, Rex will be heading up the county’s first narcotics detection unit.

At just over two years old, Rex recently celebrated his birthday with a vanilla ice cream cone and his all-time favorite, a pepperoni stick. A pure breed yellow Labrador Retriever, Rex has been training for this position since he was just a pup. After completing his initial training at the Rocky Mountain Canine Academy in Black Hawk, Colorado, Rex earned his National Police Canine Association (NPCA) certification as an official K-9 dog. And in order to keep this certification current, Rex is required to train a certain amount of hours every week, which keeps both he and Carlson incredibly busy.

“We train at least an hour a day,” said Carlson. “I hide drugs in various places and he has to find them.”

As far as partners go, K-9 Rex and Travis Carlson seem to make a perfect pair. “We’re both extremely gung-ho,” said Carlson. “Neither of us can stand to sit still.”

In fact, it was the frenetic pace and increased crime activity in the Bakken region that enticed Travis to come west. Originally from the Detroit Lakes area in Minnesota where he served as a patrolmen in the traffic division for just under two years, Carlson accepted a position with the force in Williston, N.D. However, the Williston Sheriff’s department already had a narcotics dog in place, so when Sheriff Rockvoy presented Carlson with the opportunity of starting a drug detection unit in Dunn County, Carlson and Rex jumped at the chance and began working with the department in August of this year.

“It’s been an amazing experience so far,” Carlson said of the job thus far. “You stay really busy out here and it lets me stay proactive.”

Rex has also been proactive. Thus far he has been used twice during traffic stops and recently completed a search through classrooms and lockers at Killdeer School. According to Carlson, so far Rex is doing an amazing job.

“I just really admire his energy. He will search a building or vehicle until his tongue is hanging out to the ground and he’s exhausted. He just wants to do a good job,” said Carlson.

If you are interested in contacting Travis and the canine unit, please call the Dunn County Sheriff’s Department at: (701) 573-4449.


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