A BRAVE three-year old boy who is battling a brain tumour has had a new West Midlands Police puppy named in his honour.
Despite braving weekly bouts of chemotherapy, dog-lover Bobby Humphries had something to smile about when he met one of the force’s newest furry recruits – Bobby, the springer spaniel – at its dedicated police dog training unit in Balsall Common last week.
Naming the eight-week-old pup after the Yardley youngster was the brainchild of PC Kerry Lawson, who met Bobby and his family at Heartlands Hospital.
PC Lawson was at the hospital with a prisoner when Bobby was rushed into the bed opposite last October, soon after returning from a family holiday.
The Birmingham North Police officer got chatting to Bobby’s parents, Georgina and Aaron, and was with them when they received Bobby’s devastating grade II brain tumour diagnosis.
Inspired by the youngster’s bravery, PC Lawson approached the force’s dogs unit, who were more than happy to accept the request to name one of their new sniffer dogs after Bobby.
She said: “I was at Heartlands Hospital with a prisoner when Bobby was rushed into the bed opposite.
“It was heartbreaking and I have kept in touch with them since.
“Bobby is such a fantastic boy and a real inspiration.
“It is great to see the two Bobbies together; they already seem to have struck up a great bond.”
Having already undergone seven operations and faced with another 18 months of chemotherapy, Bobby’s mother Georgina Murphy said his trip to meet his furry companion gave him a ‘boost’.
She added: “This is such a lovely gesture, Bobby loves dogs and we have got a little Staffie at home.
“To have one named in his honour is such a boost for him.
“He is such a brave little boy and doesn’t let anything get him down.
“We are due to get the latest set of results later this week and meeting the other Bobby has really raised his spirits.”
Police Dog Bobby will now learn his trade as a West Midlands Police super sniffer at the force’s in-house training programme and is expected to join a police team next year.
Spaniels are trained to search for weapons, explosives, stolen items, cash and drugs – the evidence they uncover often proving crucial in securing court convictions.
Their super sense of smell regularly sees them finding hidden items not immediately obvious to officers and which would otherwise take much longer locate, or not be found at all.
PC Dave Raymond, from the dog unit, added: “As soon as we heard about Bobby ’s bravery and determination we were delighted to name our latest police dog after him.”