THREE adorable newly qualified German shepherds have been welcomed by Essex Police’s dog unit.

Police dogs Cooper, Quando and Obi were welcomed into their new roles at a special 'passing out' parade.

The pooches showed off their new policing skills alongside handlers PC Ben Norfolk, PC Nick Hayter and PC Liss Johnston.

Asst Chief Con Rachel Nolan presented each of the dog handlers a certificate of achievement.

Braintree and Witham Times: Officer - PC Ben Norfolk with CooperOfficer - PC Ben Norfolk with Cooper (Image: Essex Police)

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Ms Nolan, previously a chief inspector in the force’s dog unit, said: “It’s not an easy course to pass, but the determination and the professionalism of each and every one of the handlers shines through to the end of the course, and today.”

Braintree and Witham Times: Companion - PC Liss Johnson with ObiCompanion - PC Liss Johnson with Obi (Image: Essex Police)

Braintree and Witham Times: Experienced - PC Nick Hayter with QuandoExperienced - PC Nick Hayter with Quando (Image: Essex Police)

PC Norfolk is the force’s newest dog handler, having joined the dog unit with his furry companion in January.

Obi is the second dog for PC Johnston, who joined the force as a response officer in Rayleigh in 2019 and soon achieved her dream of becoming a dog handler.

PC Hayter is the most experienced of the trio with 16 years of policing and almost eight years in the dog unit under his belt.