McMinn Co. inmates help care for shelter dogs transitioning to r

McMinn Co. inmates help care for shelter dogs transitioning to rescue group

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"Everybody needs a chance and somebody to take care of them," said Jerles. "Everybody needs a chance and somebody to take care of them," said Jerles.
"It teaches them to care about something and to nourish something, the sanctity of life. And develop those skills to help them get over their issues," said McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy. "It teaches them to care about something and to nourish something, the sanctity of life. And develop those skills to help them get over their issues," said McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy.
Cute, cuddly, and on their way to the clink, dogs from the McMinn Regional Humane Society will spend the next 10 days working one-on-one with inmates at the county jail. Cute, cuddly, and on their way to the clink, dogs from the McMinn Regional Humane Society will spend the next 10 days working one-on-one with inmates at the county jail.
Athens, TN - By LAURA HALM
6 News Reporter

ATHENS (WATE) - Dogs in need of a new start are getting just that, but what's unusual is that they're getting help inside a local jail.

Inmates at McMinn County jail are fostering about five dogs until the end of the month before they're picked up by the Little Rhody Rescue group and head to an adoption event in Warwick, Rhode Island.

Cute, cuddly, and on their way to the clink, dogs from the McMinn Regional Humane Society will spend the next 10 days working one-on-one with inmates at the county jail.

"They have to be out of the shelter, but we don't have a place. We don't have enough foster homes for them," said MRHS volunteer Jill Davis.

That means inmates are responsible for the basics like feeding and grooming.

"It teaches them to care about something and to nourish something, the sanctity of life. And develop those skills to help them get over their issues," said McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy.

This is a pilot program for the McMinn County Sheriff's Department and residents say it's a win-win.

"I think anything they can do to help support the community and give back is a good thing," said Jennifer Owens.

On Monday, inmates got to meet their new bunk-mates and of course that comes with some anxiety.

"What's it going to be like? Because a lot of us we haven't taken care of ourselves for awhile. So what it's going to be like to take care of them? It gives us a little hope, something to look forward to," said inmate Wendall Jerles.

Jerles' dog's name is Bandit, "Serves us well in our black and white stripes."

But time here is about learning lessons and getting second chances.

"Everybody needs a chance and somebody to take care of them," said Jerles.

The dog's food, bedding, and crates are all donations from the McMinn Regional Humane Society.
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