Puppies Behind Bars


Puppies Behind Bars

Puppies Behind Bars

"To find out how much you've truly been blessed with in terms of love, time, energy, talent, joy, abundance, confidence, intelligence, wit, or any other quality, substance, or dispensation...give of them. Then you'll know what boundless really means."

~The Universe
TUT's Adventurers Club
November 2009's 'Gifts From The Universe' Project:
Puppies Behind Bars
A new leash on life…One dollar at a time!
Dr. Thomas Lane, a veterinarian in Florida, thought that prison inmates would make excellent puppy raisers, and started the first guide-dog/prison program. Not only do inmates have unlimited time to spend with the puppies, but they benefit from the responsibility of being puppy raisers in ways that are especially important to their rehabilitation: they learn patience, what it is like to be completely responsible for a living being, how to give and receive unconditional love, and - since puppy raisers take classes and train the dogs together - how to work as a team.

Puppies Behind Bars (formally came into existence in July 1997) is a non-profit organization dedicated to training prison inmates to raise puppies to be guide dogs for the disabled and explosive detection canines for law enforcement. PBB began with five puppies in the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility, New York State's only maximum-security prison for women, and now they work in six correctional facilities, raising approximately 90 puppies. PBB strives to meet the current needs of the communities in which they work and has expanded its goals accordingly. 

After the events of September 11, 2001, law enforcement agencies' need for working dogs increased dramatically. To help meet this demand, PBB added the training of explosive detection canines (EDCs) to its program. In 2006, PBB started raising dogs to assist disabled children and adults and launched Dog Tags: Service Dogs for Those Who’ve Served Us, through which they donate fully trained service dogs to wounded soldiers coming home from Iraq and Afghanistan.

The puppies live in prison for sixteen months, after which they are tested to determine their suitability for training as service dogs for the disabled or explosive detection canines for law enforcement. If they are deemed suitable, Puppies Behind Bars returns them to the schools where they continue their formal training. If they do not continue on the track to become working dogs, Puppies Behind Bars donates them to families with blind children. In either case, these puppies, raised in such a unique environment, spend their lives as companions to people who need them.

The inmates have taken these pups that were not housebroken, did not know their names, and obeyed no commands, and have transformed them into well-behaved young pups who are a joy to be around. The raisers, too, have matured: the responsibility of raising a dog for a disabled person and the opportunity to give back to society are being taken very seriously. Puppy raisers show the pups tenderness and love, qualitities which they rarely expressed before, and are deeply committed to supplying the solid foundations upon which guide dogs are made. The puppies have affected the lives not only of their raisers, but of virtually ALL the inmates, staff, and their new family and friends.

To learn more about Puppies Behind Bars please visit their website: http://www.puppiesbehindbars.org
As part of our TUT's Adventurers Club mission, we have chosen Puppies Behind Bars as our adoptive organization for the month. To reach our collaborative goal of support for them, please donate a dollar or more now at the link below.
Happy Giving!