Catasauqua Press

Sunday, November 18, 2018
Contributed photoCatasauqua Police Department’s K-9, Zora, is going to get a new cage in the back of the patrol car, thanks to a successful GoFundMe campaign. Contributed photoCatasauqua Police Department’s K-9, Zora, is going to get a new cage in the back of the patrol car, thanks to a successful GoFundMe campaign.

Community meets goal

Wednesday, September 12, 2018 by PAUL CMIL Special to The Press in Local News

$2,500 raised for K-9 Zora just days after fund created

Not only did Zora get her own GoFundMe page, but 63 donors met the goal of $2,500 in just five days!

Let’s backtrack to get the whole story. Catasauqua’s first K-9, Jack, was an experiment of sorts to see if a K-9 would be a benefit to the community.

Officer John Wiseman and Mayor Barbara Schlegel were the drivers to get a K-9 for the borough. The community raised money for the K-9, and Schlegel put on a regular series of flea markets to help with the food bill. Jack served the community admirably for eight years and received a slew of recognitions for his work in assisting officers on patrol.

When Jack retired, the community chipped in again for a new K-9, Zora. Jack passed away with an unexpected heart problem and did not get a chance to fully enjoy his well-deserved retirement. Zora and Wiseman were on their own.

Canines sit in the back of a patrol car for long periods of time. When they get out of the car, they are expected to be ready to go. Zora needed a cage for her to relax in when inside the patrol car. The cage needs to be comfortable and safe. There was an existing cage in Catasauqua’s K-9 patrol car, but it was inadequate.

Vickie Richards, with the K-9 Kop Project, heard of Zora’s plight and put her organization into action.

“We have a lot of people in our organization who support K-9s and military dogs,” she said.

The K-9 Kop Project got started when Allentown wanted to start a K-9 program. The group got the city Remy in 2015, and the K-9 program took off in the city.

“We set up the GoFundMe page as soon as we heard about what Zora needed from Officer Wiseman at Catty,” Richards said.

Five days later, the GoFundMe goal was reached.

Richards has been active with working K-9s for years. Her organization sponsored the Lehigh Valley K-9 Trials. As the organization grew, the trials became more sophisticated. The new trials bring in K-9s, including military dogs, from across the East Coast.

This year’s East Coast K-9 Trials are scheduled for 9 a.m. Sept. 30 at 7813 Springhouse Road, New Tripoli. The event is free, but you cannot bring your dog.

If you need to have more dog time, Pocono Puppy Palooza is scheduled for Sept. 22 and 23 at Shawnee Mountain Ski Area, 401 Hollow Road, East Stroudsburg.