Two Manx German Shepherds have become Cumbrian police dogs.

Moose is fully qualified, while his sister Astra is part way through her initial course with her handler.

Dog breeder Ian Kelly and his wife Saskia, who is a dog handler, said: ‘It fills us with great pride that they have made the grade.

‘Moose has been fully qualified for a few months now, so is operational in keeping people safe.

‘His sister Astra is part way through her initial course with her handler, with great reports from the instructors at Cumbria Police Dog Section.

‘Astra actually began a course a few months back with a different handler. It transpired dog handling wasn’t for them, so she awaited her new handler and course.’

Moose and Astra are both 21 months old, having been born on January 1, 2021.

They come from a lineage of former operational police dogs, bred by Ian Kelly, a retired police sergeant who ran the Manx force’s dog unit for more than 10 years.

It started when Ian, from Laxey, sourced the litter’s grandparents from the UK, then trained them on the island to become effective police dogs.

Of their 17-puppy litter, nine became operational police dogs, with eight being sent to the Cumbria Constabulary.

One remained in the island – the father of the current crop, Danno.

Mr Kelly, who runs a dog training business called K9 X, had a long working relationship with their police force, so the dogs were sent to Cumbria. In return, the island’s force received ‘thousands of pounds worth of training, along with numerous specialist search dogs’.

Mr Kelly described the Manx breeding programme and its Cumbrian ties at the time as having been ‘extremely cost effective and beneficial’ for the Isle of Man.

He said that numerous other UK forces had enquired about future Manx litters following this.

The Manx-bred dogs were ‘worked to great effect’ in Cumbria.

They were responsible for the apprehension of burglars, armed robbers, car thieves, domestic violence perpetrators, as well as saving the lives of vulnerable people.

They became ‘renowned’ for their high standard of tracking.

Most also gained the specialist qualification to be able to work with firearms teams.

For the new litter, Danno was paired with another police dog, Kelly.

Her career in the Isle of Man had been cut short by an ear infection.