Matka, a Hungarian Vizsla Joins the Security Team of the Minnesota Capitol
The Minnesota State Capitol is located in Minnesota’s capitol, Saint Paul. The Capitol is a huge complex and houses the Minnesota Senate, the Minnesota House of Representatives, and the office of the Attorney General and the office of the Governor. The building was modelled after the Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome, Italy.
The entire Capitol is undergoing a three year restoration project and is closed to the public until early 2017. Since its original construction more than 111 years ago (in 1905) this is the first comprehensive preservation effort of the Capitol. In the meantime security staff will also increase from two troopers to ten and from 35 guards to 50. The vision behind these new security measures is to ensure a renewed Capitol that is safe, secure and resilient against terrorism and other hazards.
The new member
A new member will join the security team in January 2016. Her name is Matka and she is probably the only police officer that is usually called “sweet” or “adorable”. Matka is a Hungarian vizsla and is 18 months old. She will sniff out suspicious packages, drugs and explosives, using her very sensitive nose. She seems to be loyal and steadfast. Matka will work with state trooper Kaj Meinhardt who spoke of his canine partner in high terms. They will patrol the Capitol grounds together and take trainings to assist in unexpected threats.
Matka is not a big dog, considering her size she is even small for the vizsla breed therefore she is likely not to terrify visitors than a bigger dog might be. What most people do not know is that there is no difference between a police dog, like Matka and a human police officer. I mean assaulting, injuring or killing a police dog carries exactly the same punishment according to the law as the same crime committed against human officers. Dogs killed in the line of duty receive a complete police funeral too.
After its reopening, the Capitol, this beautiful historical building will be waiting for its visitors from all over the world. And Matka, this lovely Hungarian vizsla will be there too, she will watch over every move in the “house”.