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woman with his service dog


Sharon and Garni

February 01, 2024

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Sharon was partnered with her first CPL service dog, C.W., in 2008. Unfortunately, due to health reasons, C.W. has retired (he will be staying on as Sharon’s beloved personal pet). As difficult as that transition has been, on an emotional level, for Sharon, she recognized that she still needed and wanted a service dog. She applied to CPL for a successor dog and was partnered with Garni, a very sweet-natured Labrador from CPL’s breeding program. He was raised in the Prison Puppy Raising Program at SCI Cambridge Springs.

Sharon lives in Virginia. Most of the time she uses a manual wheelchair, following a traumatic brain injury from a car accident. But she is slowly learning to walk short distances again.  Garni provides Sharon with balance, support and retrieval skills.  Sharon is an experienced service dog handler and she and Garni quickly settled into a comfortable rhythm as they moved together through the three weeks of Team Training.  He seems tailor-made for Sharon and has become a constant supportive presence by her side.