Alisa Manzelli, Global Animal

There is no doubting the incredibly close bond police dogs share with their partners. A recent viral image from the funeral of Kentucky K9 officer Jason Ellis is visual proof of these everlasting relationships.

The 33-year-old officer was killed in a suspected ambush while picking up debris on the Bluegrass Parkway in Kentucky on Saturday. Ellis was reportedly hit with multiple shotgun blasts beside his cruiser. An investigation into the shooting is ongoing.

Ellis was laid to rest soon after and leaves behind a wife and two children.

His canine partner, Figo, who worked with him to sniff out drugs and other illegal substances, paid his final respects beside Ellis’ casket.

The photo was posted to Reddit, quickly igniting an Internet frenzy.

“Dogs can actually smell when someone or something is dead and it gives them closure. Not sure if he can tell it’s him through the coffin, but he should,” wrote one Reddit user.

Police Chief Rick McCubbin described Figo and Ellis as “true partners.”

Figo is now retired and will live with the Ellis family.

Photo Credit:
Photojournalist Jonathan Palmer captured the touching moment when the dog places his paw on his partner’s casket. Photo Credit: Jonathan Palmer, Lexington-Herald Leader

Related Articles:

Why Police Dogs Are Partners, Not Property

Remembering Zanjeer: The Dog Who Saved Thousands

Four-Legged Friends Lend A Helping Paw After Boston Tragedy

Will Dog’s Nose For Crime Capture Second Boston Bomber?

Cadaver Dogs Sniff Out Truth In Casey Anthony Murder Trial