SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A K-9 specially trained to detect firearms is now on patrol at Oglethorpe Mall.

Firearms are strictly prohibited at the shopping center — as it’s private property — and while mall officials say a majority of guests comply with the rule, the German Shepherd will help find the few who might be in violation.

“We did not launch this because there was a problem, but because it is a good, proactive program,” explained Oglethorpe Mall General Manager Rick Jackson.

Named Goro, the K-9 hails from Shallow Creek Kennels, a privately owned and operated police service dog importing and police training facility.

“Our extensive training program is built on years of law enforcement experience to ensure the highest quality in service, security and care for the dogs,” said John Brannon, owner of Shallow Creek Kennels. “Weapon detection and deterrence is a critical component to safety and prevention.”

Officials say Goro was chosen for his friendly demeanor. So while shoppers will notice the dog, they might not even be aware he scanned them for firearms.

Shallow Creek Kennels says all of their K-9s are hand-selected and trained personally to ensure each dog is confident, courageous and coherent, without exception.

“We welcome millions of guests a year and Oglethorpe Mall provides for thousands of retail associate jobs. We are proud to be a hub for the community, and it is a privilege that we take seriously,” Jackson added. “We are constantly evolving our security protocols and the new canine weapon detection program is an added safety measure to offer extra comfort to our shopping center community.”

Learn more about the mall’s Code of Conduct online at this link.