There are cats in jail in Indiana, but it’s not because they’re criminals. The cats are part of a program that “partners well-behaved offenders with homeless cats in an attempt to enrich the lives of both groups.” The inmates care for and socialize with the cats to prepare them for adoption, and there is a similar program for dogs as well. Depending on the success of the program, inmates may even be allowed to keep animals as pets.
This is such an amazing program, with such positive effects for the inmates and the animals. Caring for an animal does so much to build self-esteem and give a sense of responsibility, two things I can imagine would be sorely needed in prison.
As one of the inmates said, “Every one of them has a number and a name, just like we’ve got.”