Columbia County Sheriff's Office
David P. Bartlett, SHERIFF                     John W. Davi, UNDERSHERIFF
Copyright ©2006 Columbia County Sheriff's Office, Hudson, NY 12534
Columbia County Sheriff David Harrison, Jr. announces that the Sheriff’s Office is starting a new program in the county jail which
will accept homeless dogs who will be taught basic obedience training and other skills by inmates, that will help the dogs be more
adoptable and increase their chances of going to a permanent home.  The Sheriff’s Office contacted the Columbia Greene
Humane Society/SPCA (CGHS/SPCA) to become partners in the program which is called “A New Leash on Life”.  The program
was developed and will be overseen by Captain John Davi, Commander of the Sheriff’s Office Corrections Division.

This unique partnership places homeless dogs selected by these agencies, into the Columbia County Jail where they will live with
and be trained by specifically selected volunteer inmates.  The inmates who are chosen to be primary and secondary handlers
must first be eligible based on their classification and their disciplinary history while incarcerated. They are then interviewed
individually by Sheriff’s Office staff.  Once chosen, the inmate will receive two hours of classroom training before they begin 6
weeks of round the clock care of their assigned dog.  Once a week, a formal training class is held by Charlene Marchand, a
volunteer professional trainer and Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the CGHS/SPCA. Depending on the needs of each
individual dog, the inmate will work with the dog on basic home skills and socialization.  Once the dogs complete the six week
program, they will possess obedience skills such as how to heel, sit, recall and stay.  The dogs will also be house trained, leash
trained and responsive to voice and hand commands, making the dog more adoptable with the end result being their adoption to
a loving permanent home.  

Upon completion, the dogs will be available for adoption through the Columbia Greene Humane Society/SPCA.  The program
costs county taxpayers nothing as those involved volunteer their time, and equipment is donated or purchased from the inmate
commissary fund as allowed by the NYS Commission of Correction.

Columbia-Greene Humane Society/SPCA is dedicated to the protection, humane treatment, and well being of all animals. Its
mission is accomplished by commitment to community outreach, humane education and prevention of cruelty to animals. They
do not euthanize animals for space constraints and do not receive any federal, state, or county funding.

It is our hope that this program will not only provide a second chance for these sheltered dogs, but will also allow the inmates
participating in the program to experience a feeling of giving back something positive to the community and gain a sense of
responsibility, and satisfaction by teaching and taking care of the animal.  They will also learn job skills in dog training and
grooming which may help them once they are released from jail.

For more information about a “A New Leash of Life” program or adopting a dog that has graduated from the program contact the
CGHS/SPCA at (518) 828-6044, email
Slim, a mellow 8 year old Shepherd Mix, is looking for
a low-key retirement home to settle down in. Slim
was picked up by local dog control, who aptly named
him Slim for his thin frame and visible ribs. In Slim's
old age he has lost most of his teeth, and came in
with severe rectal hernias which were removed by
our veterinarian. Slim would do best in a quiet home
without young children or other high energy animals,
as all he really wants is a peaceful place to relax in
and be lavished with lots of love and affection, which
he deserves.
Sparky is a 10 month old male Beagle Mix, full of energy,
affection, and noise! Sparky was bounced around as a
young puppy, and he can be quite timid and shy in new
situations. Sparky does well with other dogs, but cannot be
placed with dogs or young children.