PetSmart Charities® Awards $30,000 Grant to Second Chance Animal Services to Support Project Good Dog
Grant Will Enable Renowned Program to Expand to a Third Facility
Second Chance Animal Services recently received a $30,000 grant from PetSmart Charities, the leading funder of animal welfare in North America, for the expansion of Project Good Dog into a third facility this year.
Project Good Dog was founded in 2015 to help dogs that have been surrendered to the shelter or transferred from other shelters to become more adoptable. The program pairs behaviorally-challenged shelter dogs with incarcerated individuals at correctional facilities in Gardner, Worcester, and more recently, Ludlow, Mass. The inmates provide 24/7 care and training, working with the dogs on socialization, basic obedience, housebreaking, and sometimes a trick or two.
Not only does Project Good Dog provide benefits to the dogs, it also has a positive impact on the handlers who learn patience, compassion, responsibility. Many of the inmates say caring for a shelter dog gives them something rewarding to focus on while they transition back into life in the community. The training the dogs receive while in the program helps them to be more adoptable, so they can find, and stay in their new forever homes.
PetSmart Charities’ grant will help Project Good Dog to purchase training tools, fund staff training, secure supplies like crates, beds and food, and cover medical expenses for the dogs in the program. It will also enhance the training of program participants, focusing on teaching inmates tried and true dog training methods that will help them to work with and correct behavioral issues in dogs.
“This grant will make a huge difference for the many dogs that come through this program that would normally remain in the shelter for a lengthy period of time due to their energy and lack of manners,” said Lindsay Doray, Second Chance’s Development Director and Project Good Dog founder. Approximately 80 dogs are expected to complete the program next year, with about 8-12 dogs completing the program at any one time.
“Enhancing Quality of Life Through Pets is just one of PetSmart Charities’ ten grant categories designed to support our expanded mission: to find lifelong loving homes for all pets by supporting programs that bring people and pets together. Project Good Dog does just that,” said Sima Thakkar, Regional Relationship Manager at PetSmart Charities. “With this grant, not only are we enabling Second Chance to bring inmates and shelter dogs together for mutual benefit, but ultimately, the program participants are making the dogs more adoptable. We are proud to support the expansion of this life-changing program through this grant.”