The latest crop of four-legged, furry RCMP members have officially been named after a nationwide competition, and one police dog now named Rigby has a Saanich girl to thank.
Of 11,000 entries from across the country, Josslyn Jeary, 11, was selected as the B.C. winner with Rigby. On Wednesday evening (June 15), she was presented with a certificate, photo of Rigby, stuffed toy, and a chance to spend some time with a serving police dog.
“I was very surprised when I found out because I don’t usually win this kind of thing,” said Jeary. “It’s cool I got to name one of the dogs, it’s like there is a part of me with it now.”
Jeary said she heard about the annual naming contest online and decided to enter as she is a passionate dog lover. But deciding to enter would prove to be the easy part. Actually coming up with a name would take much more work.
“I went through a synonym dictionary finding possible names, then I came up with Rigby as a good idea,” she said. “It comes from the song Eleanor Rigby from the Beatles. I love the name, and I thought it would be a good dog name because it is easier to say than some other names.”
West Shore RCMP spokesperson Const. Megan Groulx said it was exciting to have someone from Greater Victoria chosen as one of the 13 winners in this year’s competition.
“There are rules they have to follow, every year is a different letter. Next spring it will be ‘S.’ The names have to be two syllables, and there are a few other things the names have to follow in order to be accepted as an entry.”
Rigby will now be assigned to an imprinter and will go through the police dog training process. However, not every dog completes the training and becomes a working police dog. Soon after completing training, the successful dogs will be paired with a handler and will be posted to a detachment.