SAN ANTONIA, Texas (WRIC/ABC News) — U.S. police dogs working the crime beat are usually purebreds that can cost tens of thousands of dollars to train. But one man is trying to change that.

Brad Croft in San Antonio, Texas is taking shelter dogs and training them in drug and explosive detection, scent tracking, and other work.

“All they need is a chance to prove themselves and these dogs will work every bit as hard as the purebred dogs that we bring in from overseas,” said Croft, found of Universal K9.

Croft has shown that law enforcement can get the same work for next to nothing by rescuing dogs on “doggie death row.”

“If you look at the statistics, the statistics are like something like 945,000 a year that are being euthanized,” Croft says.

“If you look at the statistics, the statistics are like something like 945,000 a year that are being euthanized,” Croft says.

Croft and his staff have rescued 60 dogs so far this year from shelters across the south and are on track to save 100 dogs this year.  Once the dogs are fully trained, the dogs are then delivered to local police departments for free.

Sadie, a 5-month-old mixed breed, who was picked up on the side of the road is the star student of the eight-week class. Universal K9 currently has 15 dogs enrolled in its class.

“She was just so playful. She had a lot of energy in the beginning. … Hearing Sadie is like a miracle dog. … It’s an amazing feeling because a lot of these dogs get put down in other places,” said Estephen Centeno, an animal control worker.

But these dogs don’t just join the police force but are joining the police families.

Cpl. Wesley Keeling, an officer in south Dallas Midlothian Police Department’s canine unit, said he was reluctant to take on K9 partner Remi, who graduated from Universal K9. But the partnership quickly turned into love. They’ve been working together for more than 2 months now.

“Remi is a saved dog,” Keeling said. “She’s proud of herself. I’m proud of her… she’s wonderful. I can’t say enough about her, I really can’t.”Find 8News on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram; send your news tips to iReport8@wric.com.