Richmond Firefighters thank retiring arson dog Ellie with cake

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RICHMOND, Va. — Richmond Fire Department arson dog Ellie is retiring after five years helping investigate fires. The black lab and her partner, firefighter Lin Archer, were recognized at a ceremony this week. A three-year-old half lab/half Golden retriever named Pearl will assume Ellie’s duties.

“Both K-9’s and their partners completed arson dog training in Alfred, Maine in 2010 and 2015 respectively. Historically, the Richmond Fire Department’s holds the only Arson Detection team in Central Virginia,” the Richmond Fire Department posted online. “Ellie and Pearl are two of the more than 350 arson dog teams in the United States and Canada sponsored by State Farm and trained by Maine Specialty Dogs.”

As a tradition in the fire service no firefighter can leave until their relief arrives, the spokesperson said. LT Ellie was no exception.