Covering Louisiana

Dec 16, 2013 7:24 AM by AP

Louisiana prisoners train dogs up for adoption

ST. GABRIEL, La. (AP) - Louisiana corrections officials are touting a program in which prisoners provide obedience training to dogs set for adoption.

Three of those dogs were set Monday to be part of "graduation" ceremonies at the Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women in St. Gabriel. State officials say a fourth dog, a therapy dog trained at the women's prison, will be placed in the next few weeks with a wounded veteran who is struggling with posttraumatic stress disorder.

The program aims to increase adoption of dogs, helping them move from local animal shelters to permanent homes.

Monday's ceremony in St. Gabriel marks the program's first graduation at LCIW. Both LCIW and Rayburn Correctional Center in Angie partner with the organization "Doggoneexpress" in the adoption efforts.

William Barse, founder and director of the nonprofit agency, and others train offenders on the basics of obedience. The dogs live and train with offenders at the facility for six weeks until they are ready to be placed for adoption.

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