Meet SSD Wish and SSD Stanley! These two golden retrievers are part of our new puppy raising program at the Madalyn Program for Young Women at Vision Quest!
The Madalyn Program for Young Women provides a place for troubled young women to receive support and develop new skills and self-confidence. In addition to academics, young women participate in therapy sessions, outdoor programs, sports, and life skills training.
We are working with six young women who are very interested in raising puppies for us. SSD Wish and SSD Stanley are each placed with one girl who acts as the puppy raiser, while the other girls support her as puppy sitters. Gary, our staff representative for the Vision Quest puppy raising program, visits twice a week and holds puppy classes. We also have some wonderful volunteers who go with him and we try to take several dogs so that each young woman has a chance to work with the dogs. Just like our puppy classes here in Harrisburg, the puppy raisers and dogs practice different skills and behaviors and go on public outings to get the dogs used to working in public.
When we're not there, the program is overseen by the Vision Quest puppy raising program representative, Deb. Knowledgeable about our training techniques, Deb provides support for the young women as they continue training Wish and Stanley.
We're very excited about the Vision Quest puppy raising program! Working with the dogs is a wonderful opportunity for the young women in the Madalyn Program. Not only are they learning responsibility, but they are also learning skills that can by applied to parenting. Additionally, the dogs will benefit from having many different handlers, which is an important part of their training as service dogs.
SSD Wish joins us from Birdwing Golden Retrievers in Massachussets, and SSD Stanley comes from Tarameg Goldens. Thank you to Birdwing Golden Retrievers and Tarameg Goldens for donating them to us! These dogs are well on their way to changing lives.