Portland Fire & Rescue introduces Zeus the arson dog - KPTV - FOX 12

Portland Fire & Rescue introduces Zeus the arson dog

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Zeus, Portland Fire & Rescue's new arson dog Zeus, Portland Fire & Rescue's new arson dog
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

There's a new dog on duty with Portland Fire & Rescue.

The department introduced Zeus the arson dog on Tuesday.

Zeus will assist with fire scene investigations, especially in determining the origin and cause of a fire. All alerts by Zeus are verified by the Oregon State Crime Lab.

Zeus was certified by a chemist as being able to tell the difference between varieties of hydrocarbon scents in small quantities necessary to start a fire.

Evidence uncovered by arson dogs and their handlers can be a key point in criminal and civil trials, according to Portland Fire & Rescue.

Zeus was assigned to Lt. Fabian Jackson, who also functions as an ATF taskforce agent, in November 2015 and brought back to the department in December after training.

To keep their skills sharp, the team trains at random intervals two to three times per day.

Arson dogs are conditioned to detect and alert hydrocarbons found in petroleum-based fuel in exchange for a reward in food. Zeus won't eat out of a bowl until he retires.

Zeus' cousin, Lila, retired last November after seven years of service with Portland Fire & Rescue. Jackson and Lila worked more than 160 fire scenes during the dog's career.

Lila ate out of a bowl for the first time during her retirement ceremony.

Zeus turns 2 years old in March.

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