ANAHEIM HILLS, CA (FOX 11) - A Santa Ana police K-9 named Puskas has been released from an animal hospital after it knocked out several of its teeth while taking down a pursuit suspect on Monday.
Parolee and carjacking suspect Antonio Padilla led police on a pursuit through Orange County before crashing in Irvine and bailing out on foot
Puskas is an 8-year-old Dutch Shepherd who has been with Santa Ana PD for 5 years.
Puskas' Handler, Officer Luis Galeana, unleashed the dog on Padilla, after he saw him running towards a building.
"I directed my dog to apprehend him, he caught him, he jumped, tackled him, and we were able to take him into custody after that," Galeana said. "Initially I was very proud, very excited,wanted to jump up with joy cause he caught the bad guy and then I went to a concerned parent with my child being injured."
Galeana noticed that Puskas has knocked out all of his incisor teeth after he went muzzle first into a concrete curb while taking down Padilla.
Puskas was brought to Yorba Regional Animal Hospital in Anaheim where doctors surgically removed his damaged teeth and stitched his mouth up.
Santa Ana PD told FOX 11 that calls and texts came in from all across the country, all in support of Puskas.
"He's been bitten by a rattlesnake, he's had his jaw broken, now he's had his teeth knocked out, he's earned his pay many times over," said Cpl. Anthony Bertagna, a spokesman for Santa Ana PD.
Puskas is expected to be back on the job within 3-4 weeks because his canine and molar teeth were left unmanaged.
For now, he'll be at home resting with lots of biscuits and belly rubs.
Portions of video used in this story are restricted to the Los Angeles area.