The Fortuna Police Department's K9 police dog, Zorro, will be retiring in the summer of 2014 after eight years on patrol, according to a department press release.

The department expressed hope in the release that its program, run on donations from the community, will be able to fund Zorro's replacement. The cost for a new police dog and the training for the dog and its officer were estimated at $11,500 -- much higher than the cost of maintaining an existing police dog, the release noted.

Police dogs have an average of seven to nine years of service before they are retired, according to the release.

In response, the Fortuna Police Employees' Foundation is starting a “Community K-9” fundraiser.

”Since this will be the first dog to start while being solely a donation based program, we thought it would be fitting to name is such' said current K-9 Officer and foundation secretary Jason Kadle.

The foundation is selling Madrone Firewood for $350 a cord to help with the expense. If interested, call 707-496-1286. Donations can also be made by making checks out to the Fortuna Police Employees' Foundation, and sending them to Fortuna Police Employees' Foundation P.O. Box 795 Fortuna, CA 95540 (Please write K9 on the check). Donations can also be made online at

Donors will be provided a receipt for tax purposes, according to the release.