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ICYMI: Barrie Police respond after dog calls 911

'We had to have a good chat with the dog about using emergency lines,' says Barrie police official
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Barrie police received a very unusual 911 call this morning that didn't include any bad guys, but did have one very good boy.

The call came shortly after 3 a.m., Feb. 16, and police say in the background it appeared that someone was upset, but that the caller was unaware that police were attempting to make voice contact and determine the nature of the emergency.

Barrie police communications co-ordinator Peter Leon told BarrieToday that officers went to the home and discovered the caller was wearing a dog collar.

“The occupants were all OK, but it seems that the family dog was chewing on the phone and hit a button which called the police, likely a pre-programmed number,” Leon said. “We had to have a good chat with the dog about using emergency lines.”

City police say they receive many calls daily, some of which are actual calls for service that require an immediate police response.

Leon admits that sometimes the calls are accidental, but that every 911 call is taken seriously and officers will always respond to confirm there's no emergency and, most importantly, to ensure that the caller is not in danger.

“If anything, it is a good way to highlight a couple things. One is that we will respond when we get a call. If we receive a call and we don't know what is happening on the other end of that phone, we will attend to ensure that people are OK,” he said. “It’s also a good reminder to families to make sure the phone is out of reach from children and, now, pets.”

Leon confirmed that uniformed officers attended the residence, not the canine unit, and the name of the dog was being withheld to protect the identity of the family — or they just didn’t catch the name of the dog. 

Police are reminding the public that mobile telecommunications devices should always be locked to avoid accidental calls from being made to 911 and that they should be placed out of reach of children and pets, when left unattended or receiving a charge