updated 6/14/2007 11:28:25 PM ET 2007-06-15T03:28:25

After Koda escaped from his kennel, he chewed through the dog food stored in the sheriff's department patrol car.

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Then he started in on the seats.

Apparently, deputies say, he choked on the foam.

The 2-year-old Belgian malinois died on Monday, just a few months after joining Deschutes County deputies as a patrol dog.

The department concluded that the deputy who was Koda's handler was not negligent. The department did not identify him.

"He's pretty devastated," Capt. Tim Edwards said Wednesday in announcing Koda's death. Grief counseling was made available to the officer, Edwards said.

Edwards said he's not sure why Koda ate the car seats, but it could have been boredom.

"Many police dogs are high-drive dogs," he said. "They have to do something. It's like ADHD."

The Belgian malinois resembles a German shepherd but is smaller.

Edwards said Koda had seemed to be doing well in his law enforcement duties.

"He was a very sharp, intelligent dog," he said. "Seemed like he was going to work out to be a very good canine for us."

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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