SPOKANE, Wash.— A Washington State Department of Corrections program has dogs leaving the shelter and heading to prison, and then hopefully into a forever home.
The Blue Mountain Humane Society’s Offender Based Training program at the Washington State Penitentiary is a program where shelter dogs can learn basic commands from inmate handlers.
Officials with WSP said the program provides rehabilitation and skill-building opportunities for behaviorally challenged dogs and offenders.
Dogs that show behaviors that make them harder to adopt from the Blue Mountain Humane Society are the ideal candidates the program, according to the BMHS website. Those behaviors include barking, jumping, pulling on the leash, and even just a lack of manners.
The program is an intensive 8-week training session where the handlers teach the dogs basic commands like sit, stay, and how to walk on a leash.
The dogs spend 24 hours a day with their handlers, giving the handlers unique insights to the personality of the dogs. That information makes it easier for BMHS to find the best suited homes for the dogs.
Officials at BMHS said the partnership gives dogs a second chance. It gives dogs who had previously been looked over by potential adopters because of behavior problems another opportunity to find a forever family.