Two Humane Society dogs complete K-9 prison training program
Thomaston — Two Pope Memorial Humane Society of Knox County dogs are the first graduates of the newly-revamped K9 Training Program at the Maine State Prison.
Celebrations honoring the newly-trained shelter dogs, Chip and Bandit, plus their trainers and adoptive families, were held at the Maine State Prison Sept. 17.
The K9 Training program originated as a partnership between the prison’s Bolduc Correctional Facility and Humane Society in 2006 to give a minimum security inmate the opportunity to train one shelter dog at a time. The recently revised and expanded program involves the Maine State Prison facility and can simultaneously accommodate multiple dogs and multiple inmate trainers.
“We are very excited about the expansion of this wonderful program in partnership with PMHSKC. Our inmates now have an opportunity to acquire new skills while building trusting and caring relationships with animals," said Maine State Prison Warden Rodney Bouffard in a news release.
PMHSKC Executive Director Tracy Sala added: “This is a heartwarming story where everyone came out a winner, the trainers, the adoptive families, PMHSKC and the Maine State Prison, and the dogs. Best of all, Chip not only has a new family, because of his success in this program, he will soon begin advanced training as a service dog."