Suburban Dog House Helps REACH Behind Bars to Reform Golden Retrievers

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Online dog specialty store, Suburban Dog House, contributed a year's worth of toys to a non-profit program that matches rescued dogs with inmates for a 6-week obedience and rehabilitation program.

We wanted to help the dogs, because the rehab work being done with them is amazing. They get intense training from their prison handlers and come out ready to be adopted. Many of these dogs would have been hard to place without this program

Online dog specialty store, Suburban Dog House, donated needed dog toys for the REACH prison program at the Kentucky State Men's Reformatory. Members of non-profit group, Golden Retriever Rescue Adoption and Needy Dogs (GRRAND) contacted Suburban Dog House in need of toys for their golden retrievers in the program. "We wanted to help the dogs, because the rehab work being done with them is amazing. They get intense training from their prison handlers and come out ready to be adopted. Many of these dogs would have been hard to place without this program," says Kelly Paster, of Suburban Dog House, Inc.

Diane Knego director of the REACH program explained that the benefits were twofold. The inmates have the opportunity to learn a valuable skill and responsibility and the dogs find loving adoptive homes. "It's a win-win for all involved and all about second chances," said Knego. About six dogs at a time are in the program and they spend six weeks living and working with a total of twelve inmates. Two inmate handlers are assigned for each dog. Inmates have been carefully screened and do not have a history of animal abuse.

Suburban Dog House supplied two toys for each dog in or entering the program this year. Because the dogs may not have had previous toys, a good strong rope toy and a soft, durable canvas toy that were large enough for a golden retriever were chosen. "The toys fill a need for play, chewing and comfort important for all healthy dogs," said Paster. Michele Kierle, animal behaviorist will be teaching the inmates how to care for the dogs and proper training techniques. The training includes basic obedience, house training, leash manners and socialization. The hardest case dogs are slotted for the program since they require intense re-training. Michele hopes the program will expand as an opportunity to save dogs that would be put down.

The Warden at the Kentucky State Reformatory Men's Prison who has introduced this program in two other prisons initiated the program. GRRAND is thrilled to partner with the prison on the program and Suburban Dog House is happy to donate the needed toys. The program started in January 2009 and all the dogs from the first graduating class have been adopted.

About Suburban Dog House, Inc.:
Suburban Dog House was established in 2005 and is an online dog specialty retail store selling toys, dog beds, collars, clothing, harnesses and many other products for dogs and dog lovers. Quality products and information can be found online at http://www.SuburbanDogHouse.com.

Contact:
Kelly Paster
Suburban Dog House, Inc.
610-585-6539

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