PAWS of Purpose

Animal Farm Foundation and the NYC Department of Correction (DOC) work together to make a positive impact in the lives of dogs and people through the PAWS of Purpose Program at Rikers Island.

We match eight dogs with two groups of inmates for an 8-week residency at Rikers Correctional Facility. The dogs live with the inmates and receive 24/7 care and attention.

A certified professional dog trainer works closely with the PAWS participants to provide the dogs with daily care, companionship, training, and socialization. The dogs learn basic manners and housetraining during their stay at Rikers.

After graduating from the program the dogs go on to become assistance dogs, detection dogs, or pet dogs.



Kirk is a year old and is still full of puppy-love. He enjoys long walks along the beach, around the neighborhood, or out on the town to help burn off some of his energy.

He’s from Dekalb Animal Services in Georgia and will go to DCSPCA for adoption after he graduates.


The only thing bigger than 10-month old Veda’s ears is her energy. She would like you to kiss her nose, but not before she kisses yours! We’re guessing she’ll grow into her ears, but we secretly hope she won’t because omg so cute!

Veda is from Hall County Animal Shelter and will go the DCSPCA when she graduates.

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The only things more charming than Josie’s incredible ears are her spunk and sass. She’s a Georgia Peach through and through. She’ll make friends with everyone and then serve some nice ice tea on the back porch.

Josie is from Dekalb County Animal Shelter in Georgia and she’ll be going to DCSPCA after graduation.


Yogi is a tripod pup from Georgia who doesn’t let anything slow him down. He exudes confidence and is the kind of guy everyone wants to be friends with.

He’s originally from Fulton County Animal Shelter in Georgia and will go to DCSPCA once he graduates PAWS of Purpose.

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