The New Leash on Life (NLOL) program at Craven Correctional Institution originally began as a pilot course for North Carolina Department of Corrections System. The program rehabilitates dogs that have moderate behavior challenges. Inmates can learn life skills by caring for animals, performing community service, regaining self confidence, and discipline. In turn; the dogs build trust for humans, learn basic obedience skills, and turn into well-behaved pets for future owners. To date, they have graduated 32 classes and the dogs have been placed into new homes. Some dogs are now residing in Assisted Living Facilities.
The NLOL coordinator, Sherry Smith, acknowledged Veterinarian Assistant instructor Ms. Sue Ward, Top Dog Business Owner Drake Parker, President of Pals and Paws Bonnie Compton, and Sharon Fennah for their devotion to the program. Program Coordinator, Tammy Stocks, recognized Sherry Smith’s hard work in coordinating the NLOL program.
Three of the six trainers recently received special certifications: Greg Butler (apprentice certification), Brian Jackson (novice certification), and Eduardo Almanza (professional certification).
The other trainers are Grady Meredith who is the Senior trainer, and Josh Waterfield is the new addition to the group. They work 10-12 hour days. They’ve chosen to take a positive path in Prison by changing the lives of these dogs and their own lives.
Tuesday’s graduating dogs are Brandy, Daisy, and Smokey. With their trainers by their side, the dogs performed standard obedience commands (sit, stay, roll-over, shake) and successfully jumped over and through obstacles.
The graduates were handed over to their new owners and the inmates received four new dogs, Gizmo, Hunter, Molly, and Holly. The trainers don’t have time to unwind after the eight week class. They start the reconditioning process the same day.
Thank you, NLOL leadership and trainers for your hard work and devotion to these dogs. Thanks to the inmates who prepared a special lunch for the graduation.
To read more about the NLOL program, please Click Here