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Police Dog In Training 'Taking It All In Stride' After Picture Goes Viral

BOSTON (CBS) – A young dog hoping to make the Boston Police Department became an Internet sensation on Monday. But fear not. The officer in training has remained humble.

"Tuco's taking it all in stride," joked Boston police officer Troy Caisey, who trains K-9 dogs for the department. "I don't think he notices (the fame) at all. It hasn't gone to his head yet."

A photo of an undersized Tuco wearing an oversized bulletproof vest went viral on Monday after it was posted by Massachusetts Vest-a-Dog, an organization that provides vests and first aid kits to the Boston Police Department's K-9 unit.

Caisey told WBZ-TV that Tuco's original name was Batman, but the officer changed it because when he is training dogs he likes to have a two-syllable name that "sounds good and flows good."

Though the dog was named after a character from the television show "Breaking Bad," Caisey said it was only because of the sound of the name, not what the character represents on the show.

Normally police begin training dogs at between 14 and 16 months old, sometimes as high as two years old. But Tuco was younger when Caisey began working with him.

K-9 officer in training Tuco. (Image credit: Massachusetts Vest-a-Dog)

"This is just a unique situation where I was given a dog and I am raising him," said Caisey.

"He may work out for police work, he may not. It's not the normal way of doing it. It's just that being in the position I am as a trainer, I look at it as I have a desire to train all the time, and train a new dog. For me, it's just something new I'm doing for this puppy."

Caisey said if he does not keep Tuco for himself, he will likely take in another dog and start its training from the beginning.

The Boston police officer said he was surprised by just how far the picture of Tuco went online. Caisey added that the photo went viral to the extent that even a member of his own family was unaware of what she was sharing.

"My daughter ended up seeing it on Twitter, and wasn't aware it was him at the moment," said Caisey. "She started tweeting it out to all her friends, and one of her friends mentioned 'Isn't that your dog?' and she put it together."

For more information on the calendar Tuco is featured in, visit the Vest-A-Dog website or Facebook page.


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