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‘Un-adoptable’ dog gets second chance through Idaho prison program

This is a story about second chances – a border collie was called un-adoptable because she was so misbehaved, but she made a complete turnaround after spending some time behind bars.

Meela is a regular dog, with a regular life.

She has a somewhat high-profile life, really. State representative Neil Anderson (R-Blackfoot) and his wife Sue are Meela’s parents.

Living’s easy for Meela now. But getting here, was a different story.

Meela’s behavioral problems were so severe, Sue Anderson says she was considered un-adoptable by the Idaho Humane Society.

But thanks to a special program, Meela got a second chance where second chances are rare.

“The dogs are kept with prisoners for about 2 to 3 months,” said Anderson.

Meela’s second chance came in prison. Her exact placement in the Idaho correctional system is confidential even to the Andersons, but for several months, Meela lived with, and was trained by an Idaho prisoner.

“They live right in the cell with them,” said Anderson.

The program is called the Inmate Dog Alliance Project of Idaho (IDAPI) — a community partnership of the Idaho Humane Society, idaho correctional center, and the idaho state correctional institutions.

“Most of the dogs that are chosen for the program are dogs they feel are not adoptable because they have really bad manners, or often time have been abused or they’re aggressive dogs,” said Anderson.

Anderson got herself on a waiting list to adopt Meela, and before long, she became the family dog.

She sits, fetches and does tons of tricks — everything she learned from an Idaho inmate the Andersons will probably never meet.

“I think it’s a second chance,” said Anderson. “For both the dogs and the inmates. The dogs would probably be euthanized because they are not adoptable dogs.

More information about the IDAPI program is available, here:

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