The P.E.T.S (Pawsitive Education Training Solutions) Program, also known as the Cell Dog Program–is to say the least–heart-warming and life-changing. I challenge you to watch the video and not feel tears of warmth, joy, hope and happiness as you watch the stories of both dogs and man realize they have a second chance in society.
Located within the Kyle Correctional Facility in Austin Texas, the PAWS shelter and Humane Society select timid, abused and neglected dogs to be trained by inmates to become productive and adoptable dogs to the community.
Inmates must apply and be accepted into the training program and then a professional PAWS dog trainer picks and chooses dogs to be integrated into the six week program. Once the inmates and dog are chosen, they will share their lives together for six weeks–24/7–living, learning and caring for each other.
“Prisoners learn that if abused and neglected dogs can change–they too can change and have a second chance as well.”
To begin the Cell Dog Program, inmates must first go through two weeks of dog-handling training before their six weeks of round the clock care with their new furry “cell mates” begin.
The dogs selected for the PAWS program all come from no-kill shelters, where they live their lives waiting for adoption behind doogie bars or live their until they grow old and die. The PAWS program helps to ensure that these pups have a much better chance for adoption than if they had not gone through the PAWS program.
Throughout this six week program, inmates learn responsibility, self-esteem, self-worth, friendship, compassion and caring. The dogs learn socializing skills, and overcome their fear of abuse and loneliness. They become dogs that have learned to socialize with humans and other dogs and trust in mankind.
At the end of the six week period, the dogs graduate with a lovely ceremony and say good by to their inmate family that have helped prepare them for the outside world. In the end–prisoners–both man and dog–have learned respect, trust, love, compassion and are forever changed.
Thanks to the Cell Dog program lives are changed forever — for man, for dog and for society.
Please watch the video here and feel free to donate to the Cell Dog Program.