Navy dog trainers get federal certification

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A service dog training program at the U.S. Navy brig in South Carolina has gotten Labor Department certification for the prisoners who participate.

Navy Consolidated Brig spokeswoman Peggy Crowder said Thursday the program has a dual purpose: it teaches job skills to prisoners and gives shelter dogs new lease on life.

The brig is located in North Charleston. It started the dog training program in September.

Crowder says brig officials expect to train more than two dozen service dogs in the coming months. They will be provided to disabled military veterans.

It takes seven to 12 months to train a service dog. They perform about 70 tasks such as retrieving and carrying objects, opening doors, pulling wheel chairs and transferring money at stores.

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