‘Cracker’ the hero sniffer dog paws-es for retirement from fire service

  • Lucy taking well-earned break after 10 years
  • Dog involved in recovering vital evidence from fire debris

A  ‘Cracker’ at sniffing out evidence from burnt-out buildings is hanging up her paws for good following a decade-long career.

Greater Manchester fire dog Lucy, codenamed ‘Cracker’ is retiring after being involved in a number of high profile cases in the last 10 years.

One of Lucy’s highlights in the fire service was when she found key piece of evidence that would go on to be used to prosecute a suspected arsonist.

Mike Dewar,  dog unit manager for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue, was leading Lucy that day.

He said: “Lucy started to pull vigorously so I decided to let her off the lead to investigate. She ran full speed towards some brambles that would have been inaccessible for a person and became entangled.

“As I rushed to try and free her I noticed something black in the brambles. It was a backpack that contained a tin petrol can.

“This was later used as a key piece of evidence to prosecute the arsonist.”

Another of Lucy’s heroic moments came at an the English Defence League rally in March 2010 when she was requested by the police to sniff out potential petrol bombs that could have been used to turn the protest violent.

The area was thoroughly searched by Lucy that resulted in the area being pronounced safe and the safety to the public was maintained.

Lucy’s efforts in a multi-agency exercise resulted in a 30 year jail term for a suspect who had set on fire and murdered a man in Ashton-Under-Lyne.

Lucy is now looking forward to moving to France to live with a retired firefighter. 

Mike, who has had Lucy since she was one-year-old, called her a fantastic dog and said: "It is the right thing to do (moving to France) to give her a long and relaxing retirement."