They’re doggone tired.
After years of public service, New York City’s bedbug-sniffing miniature beagles are preparing for retirement, and the city is already searching for their replacements.
“The vet estimates that Mickey and Nemo have one to two working years left,” Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) spokesperson Matthew Creegan told the City of Nemo, 10, and Mickey, 11. “As of now, HPD plans to retain ownership of both dogs, past their working years.”
The pooch pair have been working for the code enforcement team at the HPD since 2011, when they were puppies. The fluffy government employees have made about 3,500 inspections annually in their years of civil service helping rid NYC apartments of traumatizing vermin. In 2017, they were awarded custom sweaters and a “sizable” bone for hitting the 25,000-inspection milestone, AMNY reported at the time.
Mickey and Nemo have resided on the Upper East for the duration of their working years, at the doggy daycare Biscuits & Bath. Their days have been based around 311 calls about bedbugs, which determine what apartment they’ll be accompanying code inspectors to — and sniffing out bugs in.
Canine unit inspector David Trevino has worked with the pups since they were hired, and let the dogs quarantine with him and his family in their Washington Heights apartment during the height of the pandemic, he told the City. The dogs are now back to living on the Upper East Side and working — although it’s unclear for how much longer.
The job search has begun for new bedbug-sniffing hounds, as Mickey and Nemo prepare to join their famous fellow alumni, Roscoe, in retirement from public service. (Roscoe has since found work in the private sector.) The HPD has already posted a notice seeking a handler for a new pair of professional sniffing canines.
The mutts may soon be replaced, but Mickey and Nemo will be sorely missed, especially by Trevino.
“They’re the best dogs I’ve ever worked with — only dogs I have ever worked with,” he said. “Listen, I love those dogs so much.”
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