Santa Barbara retired K-9 Betti passes away

Posted at 3:34 PM, Sep 15, 2018

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office announced the passing of its first and only female K-9 to work for the agency.

Betti died on Friday at age 14 due to health complications from old age.

Betti, whose full name is Betti Blue Van Haus Pe-ja, worked for the Sheriff’s Office for eight years before retiring in 2014.

She continued living with her handler Deputy McNeil, who remains a K9 handler with now partner Magnum, and his family, according to the sheriff’s office. Betti had been thoroughly enjoying her retirement life.

Deputy Mike McNeil said she was a special pup and is already greatly missed. He said, “She was the best partner and fur baby my family has had. She was fierce, strong and driven. She was always willing to give 100% to me, our department, and our community. She made me proud to call her my

During her eight years of service, she received a "Resolution of Commendation" upon her retirement for her performance and service to Santa Barbara County.

During her career, Betti helped locate more than thirty suspects including violent felons, arsonists, burglars, child molesters and drug related offenders. According to the agency, one of Betti’s most memorable achievements was in 2009, when she located several types of illegal narcotics including more than 300 tablets of ecstasy in Orcutt.

On another occasion in June of 2007, she was responsible for tracking down a Goleta man who had sexually assaulted an eight-year-old girl at Girsh Park.
Betti also assisted on numerous searches for evidence and lost or missing people. She was involved in a large number of building searches, alarm calls and deputy protection during major disturbances.

In addition to all of her crime fighting accomplishments, Betti participated in a wide range of exhibitions for thousands of people including civic groups and clubs, private organizations, youth groups and more than fifty schools.