The Heel Together Academy as the training is called hosted inmates who trained at least five dogs on various obedience commands. The dog lovers were later informed that all these dogs might have been euthanized if this program had not been in place.
A center head reported, “ More than 90 percent are not even aware of leash walking because they are all strays.” Lt. Kinslow mentions that the new program permits prisoners to learn and impart new skills.
Kinslow further elaborated, “ When they pass this program, these inmates are eligible for some written proof such as a training certificate. Moreover, it gives all the inmates a new opportunity to enhance their career.
An adoption ceremony for the dogs recently took place. Out of the five puppies, three of them were already adopted. The two unsold dogs are Hope and Cassie.
If anyone wishes to adopt Hope or Cassie, please contact the Animal Service Department of the local Sheriff’s Office at the number 863-402-6730.
Some people are of the opinion that old dogs can’t learn new activities. That’s absurd according to Duane Sparks, a prisoner stated that he and another prisoner worked as a team to help Cassie.
The prisoner also went on to say, “ It was actually up to me to work hard and give her a second chance.”
According to the training program in-charge, they plan to expand the reach of the program. In less than four weeks time, prisoners will begin training another set of dogs.
The plan now is to train at least seven dogs so that they are ready to go for adoption. In the future, the authorities are planning to train a dozen dogs at a time.