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Welcome to "The Greyhound Inmate Experience"
Celebrating 10 years and graduating over 1100 greyhounds!

We invite you to spend a few minutes exploring our site to get better acquainted and learn more about this all inspiring program that touches the lives of so many people.

The Greyhound Inmate Experience is a non-profit 501 (c) (3) Michigan volunteer organization. Our purpose is to socialize, train, and care for retired greyhounds in a prison environment and to educate the public of the redemptive qualities and rehabilitative benefits of the program.

Every ten weeks twenty greyhounds are put into the care and supervision of forty specially selected and trained incarcerated dog handlers. As the greyhounds transition from racer to pet, people's lives are also transformed. This program touches the soul of everyone connected to it. Learn more about our inspiration,  our adoption partners who find forever homes for our graduates and our Supportive Friends who contribute on an on-going basis...we could not do this without them!

Amazon Smile is no more.

Thank you to all those  great supporters that used TGIE as there smile choice.

The Free Press Features TGIE

The Free Press published an article on December 15, 2015. Here is a link to that article on the Detroit Free Press site.

 Liink to the Article

All Good Things Come to an End…

In 2006 greyhounds entered the Michigan Department of Corrections. Lakeland, Florence Crane, and Camp Branch hosted the first canines to enter the MDOC

In 2011, Ron and I formed and introduced the Greyhound Inmate Experience to continue the legacy. Now, 17 years and 1700 greyhound graduates later , we must sadly announce the era has come to an end. On 3/30/2023 the last group of greyhounds will leave the prison and not be replaced.

This is a monumental loss to so many people the least of  whom being Ron and me.

Forty-one dedicated men cared for and loved the greys as if they were their own children. They opened their hearts ( not easy to do in prison) and they opened their mind to learn new skills in teamwork, communication, and cooperation. In return, the greys taught them the meaning of unconditional love.

After 180 trips to Coldwater and visits with the handlers, credit for success belongs to them... but it does not stop there.

Five adoption partners did their part too, by providing us with 20 greyhounds every 10 weeks and also finding  these Beautiful Creatures their forever homes.

Unfortunately due to the closing of tracks, and the other circumstances beyond their control, our partners are no longer able to make the commitment we need to continue the TGIE program.

We cannot thank them enough. Their integrity and genuine love for the welfare of the greyhounds allowed us to work in unison with one another. No ego, power mongering, or petty picking. Ron and I will always hold you all in high esteem:

Jim and Chereyl Simmons and Merrie West from GEM; Dave and Pat Conrad from ALLIES; Carol Dickinson and Lynn Bernie from GREYT ANGELS; Susan Griffin from GREYHOUND WELFARE; and Jeff Coggins from AMERICAN Greyhound. On behalf of the entire TGIE team we THANK YOU!

Our trainer Chris Boileau who was instrumental in guiding and leading the handlers…answering questions and training concerns. Her expertise was invaluable and she earned the respect of all the handlers.

Kathleen and Gavin Haag, who offered emotional support and financially allowed us to provide all the essential needs of the greyhounds, and serendipitously became our good friends.

Lastly to all of you who supported and loved the program. Your words of encouragement and kudos meant a lot to us. We certainly did not do it for recognition but it sure was appreciated when we got it.

In closing, I will try to express the impact the program has had on Ron and me. Other than the fact that we're quite a bit older now  (smile) we learned the value of volunteerism. Giving wholeheartedly from your heart for a cause that supersedes you… the ups and downs and the good and bad, all bringing a sense of peace and pride.

We learned the meaning of redemption and the deep belief that lives can be saved and changed when presented with the appropriate stimulus.

 We learned to recognize and appreciate all the freedoms,  blessings, and the opportunities we have.

We confirmed that being a positive role model can give people hope and the desire to be a better person themselves.

Lastly, to all others who made this possible, we extend our heartfelt thanks and appreciation.

To the Michigan Department of Correction and in remembrance of Warden Carroll House, Amy Houtz who managed the daily operations of the program from the inside of the wire, and Nick Ader who followed in her footsteps.

To all our loving supporters and adopters, and most importantly to the 145 men who went through the program. For some, their “journey to be free “ is complete and they have become husbands, fathers, and good citizens in their community.

To those still on their journey, always remember our mantra:

               Be Positive – Stay Focused – Remain Commited

Sadly and with great appreciation…we extend our sincere wishes that our paths will continue to cross. Until then…Our Final Goodbye to The Greyhound Inmate Experience!

 

Tribute Letter to Our Handlers

An adopter shared her impressions of adopting a TGIE Greyhound. Click here to read it. Tribute Lettera>..