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.KAREEM AND 18-MONTH-OLD GOLDEN RETRIEVER,TUCKET --  Kareem is in prison for 13 years and has served 10 years.  KAREEM: "I committed numerous armed robberies and attempted murder. Prior to raising my pup my life has always been all about me, meaning, I never carried the responsibility of another person. Having a pup made me situate my life around him as opposed to me putting myself first. I'm training Tucket to be a service dog for a disabled person. He is very good with his commands, he loves to work which his strength. The hardest part of this program is bonding and nurturing a wonderful companion and know that we will have to separate when his training is up. "..The Puppies Behind Bars (PPB) Program works with prison inmates in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut to train service dogs, including ones who help injured soldiers. The puppies arrive at 8 weeks-old and remain at the prisons, mostly working with one inmate, for 20 months. Fishkill Correctional Facility is a medium security prison in New York with 22 men in the puppy program. The emotional element of caring for the puppies breaks down the hard façade that most prisoners create for themselves to survive prison life.  Prisoners learn responsibility and pride in helping others. The program often gives them a new outlook on their crimes, their time in prison, and goals when they are released. .
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