JESSUP, Md. (WJZ)—The odds of finding good homes for shelter animals are sometimes stacked against a happy ending. But there is a unique route to adoption.
Alex DeMetrick reports it runs from the pound to prison.
Patuxent Institute is unique among Maryland’s prisons. Inside the compound, it looks like the treatment facility it is for inmates with psychological issues.READ MORE: COVID-19 In Maryland: 932 New Cases Reported, 11 More Deaths
Many of whom have committed crimes serious enough to require the bars and locked doors of a standard prison.
And then, there is Daisy, who came to Patuxent from an animal shelter.
“I never in a million years thought I’d be taking care of a dog in prison, but it’s a great experience though. I’m glad I done it,” said Michael Montgomery, inmate.
Daisy came as a puppy to Patuxent from the Washington Animal Rescue League.
Michael Montgomery and William Fitts have been training her for the past year, for life beyond bars.
“Sit, stay, lay down, roll over. Everything a normal person that has a dog would want it to do,” Fitts said.
In the women’s section, Bam-Bam was also trained to become a good fit for adoption.
“Yes, definitely. They have a great experience here and they get a lot of training and a lot of guidance in how to behave,” said Alexandra Dilley, Washington Animal Rescue League.READ MORE: 'An Incredible Therapy' | Hagerstown Doctor Says Monoclonal Antibody Treatment Provides Fast Recoveries For Some COVID Patients
It’s an experience that cuts both ways.
For inmates, this experiment fits the institute’s mission.
“We do stress the need to engage in positive behavior as we see that eventual reward as their successful re-entering into the community,” said Dr. Randall Nero, Patuxent Institute director.
“It gave me empathy and understanding and a lot of responsibility,” Fitts said.
Unlike the inmates who stay behind, the dogs now move on to new homes.
Question: Is it going to be tough to say goodbye?
“Yeah. Yeah. I’m definitely going to miss her. But I’m glad she’s going to have a home. I’m glad she has a home,” Montgomery said.
As the dogs move onto new homes, two more puppies will be coming to Patuxent Institute for training.MORE NEWS: Rockville Police Officer, Maryland National Guardsman Daniel Morozewicz Arrested On Child Porn Charge
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