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Apache Is Starting His Service Dog Training In The Prison Pup Program

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Apache left for guide dog college nearly two months ago and if you’ve been following us here on the blog and on Facebook then you already know that he was career changed due to medical conditions.

However, some good news did come from this.  At first we thought Apache would go into the GDA Adoption program, but we recently found out that he was accepted into the Canine Support Teams Prison Pup Program!

An Update On Apache’s Service Dog Training

Apache A Golden Retriever Puppy
Apache is now training to be a service dog in the CST Prison Pup Program

Unfortunately, I haven’t received any pictures of Apache in action during his service dog training.  So for now you’ll just have to look at some of his old puppy pics.  We did receive an email message with an update on Apache and his sister Asha who is also entering the Prison Pup Program.  Here’s the email we received:

Asha and Apache are doing well they spent the first few days at Sherri Peek’s Ranch, she has a boarding kennel there where she evaluates all the dogs before they head into CIW Chino Institute for Women. She fell in love with both of them, they enjoyed their time at the ranch and were able to just unwind play with other dogs and just be dogs.

She evaulated both Asha and Apache and is so happy to have such well adjusted solid dogs. On Tuesday they both were taken into CIW and matched with inmate Trainers. The Trainers were so excited to have such beautiful dogs, GDA Career Change dogs and a big surprise to them. They know how well our dogs are socialized and they love having them.

I worked with the Trainers on the commands the dogs know and what the equivelent command would be…such as “Get Busy”, in service dog world it is “Better go Now “, we do (GDA) a different formal come, CST does a come and a come here. So there are a few things that are different.

This next week the dogs will be getting used to the surroundings, a new routine, and a new Trainer. CST training is broken down into tracks, the first is obedience, the second directional and the third is task work. They will be working on obedience and directional to start.

Directional has elements of obedience but for positioning CST commands to name a few would be heel is on the left, side is on the right, they have a command “go around” “go through” “go in” used to go under a table for instance. There are many, many commands to challenge the dogs and keep them engaged. I can assure you Asha and Apache will have lots to learn.

It sounds like Apache and Asha have a lot of challenges ahead.  I think they will both do well and I can’t wait for more updates hopefully with some pictures 🙂

Apache working Morita Produce
Apache at the docks of Morita Produce

A Little Bit About Canine Support Teams (CST)

Canine Support Teams is a non-profit, volunteer organization, made possible by the many people who volunteer their time, energy, money and love for the purpose of enhancing the lives of those affected by disabilities.

CST service dogs are placed with people who use wheelchairs, walkers, crutches or canes. CST service dogs are taught to assist their partners by pulling manual wheelchairs, turning lights on and off, pushing elevator buttons, retrieving dropped or hard to reach items, making purchases or banking transactions, opening and closing doors and drawers, barking to get help and providing stability for walking. In addition, these dogs help to serve as an ice-breaker in public situations and provide constant companionship for their partners. [Read More About Canine Support Teams]

A Little Bit About The Prison Pup Program

The “Prison Pup Program” was conceived out of a dream from a tenacious woman named Sister Pauline Quinn. Already being the trailblazer for many other Prison Training programs in which inmates are trained, mentored and finally trusted with the privilege and responsibility of training dogs for service to the disabled community, Sr. Pauline Quinn made a call to John Dovey, Warden of CIW in 2002. She also contacted Carol Roquemore, CST’s founder and CEO. Due to her tenacity and her belief in the rehabilitative benefits for the inmates and the obvious assistance they could provide to the community, in addition to the expectation of being able to shorten a nearly three year waiting list for service dogs, both John Dovey and Carol Roquemore could not say no. They embraced the opportunity to see the good that could come out of such a match! [Read More About the Prison Pup Program]

I’m so proud of Apache!  I know he will be great in the Canine Support Teams Prison Pup Program.

Are you a puppy raiser?  If so, have you raised a career changed puppy?  What is your career changed puppy doing today?  Tell us about it in the comment section below.

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  1. Yes, I’m very excited for Apache. I’d like to learn more about CST and the Prison Pup Program. I’ll keep everyone informed!

  2. I heard that they cannot take pictures while Apache is in prison. So unfortunately there won’t be any picture updates of Apache. I will continue to post his older puppy pics 🙂

  3. Hi Hawk,

    Yes, I’m happy to that Asha and Apache both got into the Prison Pup Program. I can’t wait for our next update!

    Take care,

  4. Hi Jen,

    Thanks! We’re very excited for Apache too. I can’t wait to see him again hopefully as a working service dog.

    Take care,

  5. Hi Sherrie,

    No problem. I’ll make sure and post here an on our Facebook page any time we hear updates about Apache. I had heard that Canine Support Teams was an option when I was raising Stetson, but I wasn’t sure Apache would be eligible since he had a medical condition. I’m glad he made it into the program and I’m very excited to see how he does.

    Take care,

  6. I miss Apache, but I’m happy he’ll be able to learn and be loved by someone else…and hopefully in the future help someone in need!! I can’t wait to see a picture of him working/learning in prison!

  7. Hi Y’all!

    Just hoppin’ by to say “hi”.

    Sounds like these two dogs are going to still have full service lives.

    Y’all come by now,
    Hawk aka BrownDog

  8. Cobly, thanks for keeping us updated! What exciting news and as a puppy raiser with GDA, it is neat to hear about another career change option for a GDA pup.

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