Ramone came a long way under her care, but after two months with an adoptive family, he failed to bond with them, and was returned to the prison shortly before Christa was to be released. She had served a little less than half of a 14-year sentence, and is serving the balance of her sentence on community placement. She was permitted to take Ramone home with her.
“It was really scary, because they’d never let anybody take a dog home before. It was like, ‘Oh great, she’s just getting out on the streets, so let’s give her a dog,’” Christa remembers. “It was just crazy. But I love this dog and I couldn’t imagine being without him and he couldn’t imagine being without me.”
She moved to Bellingham, north of Seattle, where she now lives with two of her three teenage daughters and Ramone. Soon after her release, she landed a job in customer service at the Whatcom Humane Society, where she worked for more than two years. On the day we talked, she’d just received a glowing review after six months working the front desk for a veterinarian—a stellar comment not only on her job performance, but also on her own efforts and the program that helped her land on her feet.
Groom and Board
Live near Gig Harbor, Wash., and need to board your dog or have him groomed? Check out services available through the Prison Pet Partnership Program. With 28 indoor dog kennel runs and full-service grooming, the facility operated by PPPP has a lot to offer. (They also care for cats.) All kennel workers are Pet Care Technicians certified through the American Boarding Kennel Association. For details, visit the website, phone 253.858.4240 or email.