Sweetwater County Leading The Way With Dog Therapy Program For Juveniles

by | Dec 2, 2022 | News | 0 comments

Sweetwater County is making the mental health of youth a high priority as Wyoming is facing the issue of being ranked in the top ten in the United States with the most at-risk youth facing mental health and substance abuse challenges. The youth that are incarcerated face even higher instances of mental health and substance abuse issues, according to recent studies. In an effort to help such youth, the members of the Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office, with the support of the Sweetwater County Board of County Commissioners, are implementing a new idea. The sheriff’s office will have a dedicated K-9 assigned to a detention deputy handler. This K-9 will be specifically trained, certified, and assigned to assist with crisis intervention and to support the overall mental health and wellness of  juveniles residing at the facility. The animal-assisted therapy program for juvenile offenders at the Sweetwater County Detention Center is the first of its kind in Wyoming, and one of only a handful across the country. The support for the idea has been great as the science behind similar types of animal assisted therapy programs in law enforcement have clearly shown that it has a positive impact.

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