Mexico gifted a new search puppy from Turkey

STORY: The three-month-old German Shepherd will join Mexico's famed canine unit, specialized in helping locate survivors in a country prone to earthquakes and other natural disasters.

The black and beige fur-ball with perky ears and outsize paws has been named 'Arkadas' - meaning "friend" in Turkish - following an online vote.

Arkadas will be trained by the same trainer, Corporal Juan Carlos Villeda, who cared for Proteo, the rescue dog that died on mission in Turkey, the army said.

"Proteo was a great dog, one of the best in his area. We will make him (Arkadas) the same or even better," Villegas told Reuters.

Wearing a padded green harness featuring a tiny Mexican flag, Arkadas was welcomed to the force in a formal ceremony at a military base in Mexico City on Wednesday, joined by his new canine and human colleagues, standing to attention.

Mexico paid homage to Proteo, also a German Shepherd, at a military funeral earlier this year.

During his time in Turkey, Proteo helped find the bodies of 29 earthquake victims and rescued three people while they were still alive under the rubble.

“Proteo will always be a symbol of the permanent friendship and solidarity between Mexico and Turkey. I hope that Proteo’s little brother Arkadas can serve this government," said Turkish Ambassador to Mexico Ilhan Tug during the ceremony.