The Milford Police Department has two new members — Zar and Zeus, two German shepherds. The dogs and their handlers become Milford's two new police K-9 teams.

Officer Sean Owens and his K-9 partner Zar and Officer Emily Covelli and her K-9 partner Zeus, recently completed an intense 14-week training program with the Connecticut State Police Training Unit 170th Patrol Dog Training Troop. The K-9 teams received classroom and practical training in areas such as tracking of suspects and missing people, obedience, building searches, evidence recovery and handler protection.

Owens was awarded the Academic Award for the highest grade point average of the graduating class.

Covelli is Milford's first female K-9 officer.

“The K-9’s superior senses of smell, hearing and physical capabilities make trained law enforcement canines a valuable supplement to police manpower,” Police Department Spokesman Jeff Nielsen said in a press release. “These K-9 teams are remarkable and provide extraordinary value to the lives of thousands.”

Milford Police K-9 teams perform several demonstrations a year throughout the community.

The Milford Police K-9 program has three patrol division K-9 teams, which includes these two K-9 teams and Officer Sean Degnan with his K-9 partner Diesel.

In addition, the department has a narcotics detection K-9 team consisting of Detective Dennis Broderick and his K-9 partner Cedar.

Additional information regarding the department’s K-9 program can be found at ci.milford.ct.us/police-department/pages/k-9-unit.