A LIFE saving police dog is to retire and hand over the baton to his son and daughter.

Luther, the loveable German Shepherd has been with his handler, PC Andy Errington since he first started training as a police dog in 2012.

Over the years the pair have had a colourful career together, policing busy football derby day matches and responding to some of the most dangerous jobs on the frontline of policing.

But now Luther is passing on the baton to his son Winston and daughter Wren – who both qualified as police dogs with Northumbria Police last year.

With his children already serving at Greater Manchester Police and the Metropolitan Police, Luther's policing ancestry will live on for generations.

PC Errington, of the force’s dog section, said: “Luther is a dog of a life time, he has no doubt contributed to saving many lives and protecting the public during his career.

“He will live with me for the rest of his retirement now, he is really quickly adapting to retired life living in the house and not a kennel.

“He has a new fluffy bed that he loves and has been having plenty of treats and long walks but he will always be a part of the police family.

“Luther’s son Winston and daughter Wren are both general purpose dogs in the force, so it’s their turn to step up and carry on with the duty. They have big paws to fill.

“I am so thankful to have worked with him over the years he is not just a dog, he is a best friend. I am looking forward to him relaxing and enjoying his retirement at home with us.”

To find out more about the work of the dog section follow them on Twitter at @NPDogSection.