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York County Animal Shelter: Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Grant Report

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

This grant was used to send a staff member to the Dogs Playing for Life mentorship.

Brittney Muto attended this training and has put it into action in our shelter in variety of ways, the first being that she has used what she learned to provide assessment and socialization for dogs that we received and house as part of a dog-fighting case. Second, she has used it for intensive one-on-one training for dogs in our care that are non-social, displaying behaviors of concern, or are deteriorating in a kennel environment. Third, she used this training to create an in-kennel enrichment program for all dogs in our facility. Additionally, she is teaching a training to our volunteer staff on leash-walking skills.

How many pets did this grant help?

Brittney has used this training to work with 20 dogs from a fighting case. In addition, she has worked with six “challenging-behavior” cases since attending the training. She has also used what she learned regarding kennel enrichment training to begin a kennel program and leash training for volunteers, which has benefited all 265 dogs who have passed through our shelter in the last three months.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Corky came in marked as dog-aggressive by staff for his kennel reactions; walking him past kennels, he would attack every cage he could. I assessed him in playgroups and quickly realized he wasn’t dog-aggressive at all. I started by walking him on a loose leash through kennels and squirting him with a water bottle when he would try to run up on a cage and treating him when he would come back to me or look at me. He was also horrible about busting through doors, so I worked with him on sitting and waiting to be “freed” to walk through. When Corky left for rescue, I could successfully walk through the whole shelter and he constantly made eye contact with me, not even paying attention to any dogs, and patiently waiting to walk through doorways.

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