But when the radio sounded and she was given the command, she went into "work mode," the chief said.
She was playful and enjoyed working, Whittington said of the dog. The chief said he and Elliott had talked about retiring the animal.
He left it up to Elliott, her handler, partner and "parent," to make the decision. Police dogs typically live with their handlers and become part of their families. Elliott told the chief that as long as his partner was playful, able and wanted to work, he would keep her at his side.
"She was just as frisky on her last day as she was on her first day," Whittington said. "I think that shows a lot strength in the dog itself and the dedication she had to work."
The chief said he has encountered many police canines, but not many were as dedicated as Alley. She was trained in drug location and officer protection.
She also was called upon to track missing people or suspects.
"She would pursue you until she caught you and then she would make sure you were escorted back to the police department to get full credit for what you'd done," Whittington said of Alley, earning a hearty bark from Kratos, Dunbar Sgt. Mike Lester's canine partner. "Absolutely, that's exactly what I think."
Whittington said he believed it was destiny for Alley to be Elliott's partner and that the bond grew between them.
Elliott stood stock still in full uniform, a black band over his badge, while the chief spoke. He grew emotional behind his reflective sunglasses at one point during the ceremony and gave a slow salute when the other officers saluted the wooden carving of his partner and best friend.
About a dozen K-9 officers and their handlers came from around the area to show support for Elliott and to remember Alley. More than two-dozen citizens came to the memorial as well. More than a few of them were left teary-eyed by the memorial.
Alley was cremated. A line of police cars wound through the city after the service as a show of respect.
Contact writer Ashley B. Craig at ashley.cr...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4850.