Yesterday I highlighted America’s VetDogs. One more aspect of the organization I admire is the Prison Puppy Program. From the America’s VetDogs website:
In order to be selected as dog handlers, inmates are required to submit a letter of intent to a liaison, after which a team of social workers, case managers, psychology, custody and program staff become involved in the selection process. Inmates who are honorably discharged veterans are given preference to become raisers, but all candidates must have acceptable behavioral records while they have been incarcerated and first must pass a screening of the prison intelligence department.
The puppies learn basic every-dog things like how to sit, stay, heel, and be housebroken. The training then moves onward to include how to pick things up off the floor, how to turn lights on and off, and how to open and close doors. The prison has three or four puppies at a time. As you can imagine, they are popular residents so the puppies get used to being in busy environments.
On weekends, the puppies leave the facility and are placed in volunteers’ homes so they can become socialized with children, other animals, and be taken to many different public places.
video: YouTube, America’s VetDogs