Toro’s top dog at Quay County Sheriff’s Office

Chelle Delaney

Toro’s not the kind of guy that comes dragging into work.

In fact, he’s so happy to be on the job that his tail wags.

Yep, Toro’s a dog. An 18-month-old Belgian Shepherd that’s trained to sniff out drugs.

Toro had not even put in his first 40 hours on the job, when he found the scent of marijuana, said the K-9 unit’s handler Sgt. Mark Dahlsten.

The New Mexico State Police suspected the marijuana was in a vehicle near the Port of Entry on Interstate 40, Dahlsten said.

“He got off to a good start,” Dahlsten said. “He alerted and they found a little more than 400 pounds of marijuana.”

Purchasing Toro and putting him through training cost more than $5,000, said Sheriff Joe Schallert.

San Jon helped with those costs through a cooperative agreement with the county, Schallert said.

Further support was provided by Jimmy Watson of Tucumcari Ranch Supply. “He’s going to provide food for the life of the dog,” Schallert said.
Toro is also on call to assist other agencies and will also work at the schools, Schallert said.

Toro, who came from Europe, was trained in the U.S. Border Patrol’s canine program.

Dahlsten said he and Toro will routinely take refresher courses with other handlers and K-9 units.