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Explosives-Sniffing Dog Needs Cancer Treatment

Image courtesy of Paulo Maurtua.

Image courtesy of Paulo Maurtua.

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A canine handler at the Orlando International Airport is raising money on go fund me to help pay for his dog’s cancer treatment.  Sinda the explosives sniffing dog is scheduled for surgery next week.

Paulo Maurtua is one of nine canine handlers at the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority.

For the last four years he’s worked with Sinda, a German Shepherd – Belgian Malinois mix trained to sniff out explosives.

Sinda retired last week after she was taken to the vet for what Maurtua thought was an ear infection.

“I spend 24-7 with that dog, my girlfriend says I probably love that dog more than I love her,” said Maurtua.

“It was tough to hear it, I mean she was with me in the car, and when the doctor told me I was kind of blown away by it and I just laughed and said there’s no way that you guys found cancer in there.”

The estimated cost of surgery and radiation therapy sessions is $12,000.

Maurtua said any of the money that doesn’t go to Sinda’s medical care will be donated to another dog in need.

He hopes Sinda will live out a peaceful retirement after the treatment. In the meantime it’s a couple months to wait before he can be paired up with a new explosives sniffing dog.

“During the holiday season we’re out there with the massive crowds, and with things going on around the world right now- it’s tough to lose one of our team members because we do provide a great service to the airport and when you lose one of these guys you have to expect other people in the team to cover for us and work twice as hard,” said Maurtua.


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Matthew Peddie

About Matthew Peddie

Host of WMFE's Intersection & Assistant News Director

A recent transplant to the Sunshine State, Matthew Peddie grew up in New Zealand and studied journalism at the University of Western Ontario. After graduating with an MA in Journalism he returned to Christchurch, working as a reporter for Radio Live and Radio New Zealand. He’s reported live from the scene of ... Read Full Bio »

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