NCCW celebrates National Ugliest Dog Day with adorable pups

NCCW celebrates National Ugliest Dog Day with adorable pups

Furry and lovable, these pups may not be contenders for National Ugliest Dog Day today, but they do hold a special place in the hearts of many at the Nebraska Correctional Center for Women (NCCW).

These tail wagging friends are part of the non-profit DomestiPups program in Nebraska. Each puppy comes to NCCW on a mission to complete 12 weeks of basic obedience school with their trainers. A group of women who live at the facility are in charge of training each dog. The K-9’s are put through a series of physical tests and a series of ability testing before they can qualify to become service dogs.

“It’s been an experience to learn new techniques and how to work with the volunteers,” said Lora, a trainer in the group.

Through working with the dogs, the trainers in the program get a chance to learn a variety of communication skills along with patience, responsibility and unconditional love.

NCCW teammates note the positive difference having the dogs around the facility makes. “The dogs contribute to a calm feeling in the unit,” said Public Information Officer and Administrative Assistant Lori Keller. “They give the ladies a sense of pride.”

Upon completion of their training, the dogs are evaluated for their next placement. Some dogs get to go on to one of the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS) facilities that house men for more in-depth training. That’s where they become fully certified service dogs for people with mobility issues or for those who suffer seizures. Other pups might go on to work in schools, counseling centers or a variety of other settings with children. Another option is to become emotional support dogs for people in the public.

The incarcerated women at NCCW acknowledge how life changing it has been to work with the dogs. “The dogs gave me a purpose outside of myself and to be able to give back a little,” said Sarah, one of the handlers.

“The dogs have given me hope,” said trainer Jessica.

In honor of National Ugliest Dog Day, share pictures of your pups on the NDCS social media pages! Even if your precious pooch is so ugly, it’s adorable, NDCS loves them all!