State Farm Brings Aspen The Arson Dog To YMCA Summer Program At Mountain Elementary School

The YMCA summer program at Mountain Elementary School this summer got a real treat Thursday afternoon when Aspen the arson dog made an appearance. Aspen is trained to investigate fire scenes to find arson evidence. Aspen is in the area to attend a regional seminar at Buffalo Thunder for State Farm Insurance. State Farm, nationwide, pays training costs for arson dogs. There are about 380 active arson dogs in the U.S., each requiring about 300 hours of training. Local State Farm Agent Lou Santoro was instrumental in bringing Aspen to the YMCA summer program. Photo by John McHale/

KC Alberg and his partner Aspen who is trained to ‘sniff out’ gasoline and other liquid accelerants used by arsonists to intentionally start fires. Through her keen sense of smell, Aspen can pinpoint where a fire might have started, which saves investigators dozens of man-hours. Alberg prepared several samples for Aspen to investigate, and in one he have placed a drop of gasoline. Photo by John McHale/

Aspen investigates the samples and finds the one containing gasoline. Photo by John McHale/


Students each had an opportunity to meet Aspen. Photo by John McHale/

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