GEORGETOWN COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD)- A Georgetown County Sherriff’s Office K9 deputy has new protective gear thanks to a national non-profit organization.

Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. recently gifted K9 Dukat a bullet and stab protective vest.

Since its inception in 2009, the nonprofit has distributed more than 4,4740 vests to K9s of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States. According to the group, each vest weighs an average of 4 to 5 pounds and has a value of between $1,700 and $2,300.

Vests are custom fitted to each canine and certified by the National Institute of Justice, the same agency that certifies torso-worn ballistic-resistant body armor for law enforcement personnel.

There are an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K9s in the United States.