Dog Training Program a win-win for all

Shown are Kerri Jones- Atascosa Animal Allies volunteer and Brenda Gibbon Atascosa Animal Allies volunteer and Senior Kennel Attendant for the City of Pleasanton Shelter.

Shown are Kerri Jones- Atascosa Animal Allies volunteer and Brenda Gibbon Atascosa Animal Allies volunteer and Senior Kennel Attendant for the City of Pleasanton Shelter.

Atascosa Animal Allies and the Federal Correctional Institution in Three Rivers, with the support of the City of Pleasanton, have joined together to initiate a Dog Training Program at the prison.

This will give inmates the opportunity to learn a skill and gain a certificate that can be used once they leave the prison system. Inmates and staff at the prison were excited and ready to start the training with their four-legged friends.

An orientation on dog care, training and information on each dog was given by Brenda Gibbon, Senior Kennel Attendant for the City of Pleasanton, on Tuesday, July 13 at the prison.

“We feel like this is a great opportunity for us as citizens of South Texas to help our fellow man, while still benefiting the dogs in our program,” said Melinda Eustace, Atascosa Animal Allies Placement Director. “We feel drawn to be a part of this program, not only for the love and attention our dogs will receive, which helps them in the long run, but also because of the chance it gives to the men in the program to build skills and training that will help them succeed once their sentences have been served. We firmly believe that the love of an animal can be instrumental in helping these men get through the trials of being incarcerated. This is an exciting time for us and we’re honored to have been chosen to help start this life-changing program.”

Pictured loading dog food are, from left: Eydie Groenke- Atascosa Animal Allies volunteer, Johnny Huizar- Pleasanton City Manager, David Alviso-City of Pleasanton Director of Public Works, Brenda Gibbon-Senior Kennel Attendant, Andres Aguirre- Pleasanton City Secretary, John Raney- Community Development Director, Vickie Zamzow- Supervisor of Education Federal Correctional Institution Three Rivers with Allison Zamzow and Richard Willow- Teacher Federal Correctional Institution Three Rivers. MELINDA EUSTACE | COURTESY PHOTO

Pictured loading dog food are, from left: Eydie Groenke- Atascosa Animal Allies volunteer, Johnny Huizar- Pleasanton City Manager, David Alviso-City of Pleasanton Director of Public Works, Brenda Gibbon-Senior Kennel Attendant, Andres Aguirre- Pleasanton City Secretary, John Raney- Community Development Director, Vickie Zamzow- Supervisor of Education Federal Correctional Institution Three Rivers with Allison Zamzow and Richard Willow- Teacher Federal Correctional Institution Three Rivers. MELINDA EUSTACE | COURTESY PHOTO

It proves the perfect opportunity to help the dogs stand out and get noticed. Once these dogs are trained they will be put up for adoption. It is a win-win.

Warden Jason Cox said, “We are excited to have the dog program at FCI Three Rivers. This program will be a good opportunity for the inmates to learn how to train the dogs, while also learning how to love, care and be responsible for an animal. This will help them grow into a more compassionate person and help them function as a better citizen once released. This program also helps the dogs by providing them love and care, as well as training, to become better pets for their future forever home.”

Pictured at the prison are, from left: Rhonda Dumas, Kerri Jones, Roxie Garza, Amanda Williamson, Vickie Zamzow, Patrick Gleason, Brenda Gibbon and Melinda Eustace.

Pictured at the prison are, from left: Rhonda Dumas, Kerri Jones, Roxie Garza, Amanda Williamson, Vickie Zamzow, Patrick Gleason, Brenda Gibbon and Melinda Eustace.

The program will run three-nine months. Four dogs from the City of Pleasanton shelter which have been turned over to AAA and one community dog make up the pack that are in the program. Atascosa Animal Allies states that it is thankful to be able to work with the City of Pleasanton to save our local dogs and provide a better life for them.

Anyone who would like to donate supplies or funds for this program can send a message through their Facebook page: Atascosa Animal Allies or to atascosaanimalallies@gmail.com.

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