News Story


Celebrating the First Completion of RUFF
6/22/2017 3:00:00 PM


Nature of Incident:

Celebrating the First Completion of the R.U.F.F. Road Training Program and the Pawsitive Steps Dog Training Program and the Adoption of the Dogs



Detention Services Division -Todd Road Jail Facility

600 South Todd Road, Santa Paula

Ventura County Probation Agency Juvenile Facility

4333 Vineyard Ave, Oxnard


Date & Time:

June 20 and 21, 2017



Inmates at Todd Road Jail Facility and the youth at the Juvenile Facilities celebrated their dogs' completion of training through the 16-week obedience program referred to as R.U.F.F. Road (Rehabilitation Utilizing Furry Friends) at Todd Road Jail and Pawsitive Steps at the Juvenile Facilities. The programs commenced in February 2017 and were completed with a graduation ceremony and celebration of adoption on June 20, 2017, at the Juvenile Facilities, and on June 21, 2017, at the Todd Road Jail.  Representatives from the Board of Supervisors, Grand Jury, the Honorable Kevin McGee, and inmate and youth families and friends were in attendance.  The families who adopted the dogs from the R.U.F.F Road program were also in attendance at the ceremony.  Afterwards, the inmates handed off their dogs to their new owners.  The youth at the Juvenile Facilities will be relinquishing their dogs this week to go to their new families.  It is a bittersweet moment of joy and sadness as the youth and inmates have grown fond of their companions, but are happy to hand them over to their forever families, who will give them the love and support they deserve. 

Both programs were a collaboration between Pivot Animal Assisted Educational Outreach, Ventura County Animal Services, the Sheriff's Office, and the Probation Agency.  At the Juvenile Facilities, the program was further enhanced by the collaborative efforts from Ventura County Behavioral Health and the Ventura County Office of Education.   

During the ceremony, the youth and inmates had the opportunity to showcase their dogs' new abilities by having them perform basic obedience and impressive tricks.  They were also given the opportunity to share their experiences with the program and how it helped them and the dogs.  During the ceremony, the youth and the inmates were presented with certificates of completion.  



We would like to congratulate the youth, inmates, and everyone involved in making these programs a success!  Farewell Chance, Buddy, Lipit, Nino, and Hope!  You all will be missed.  Enjoy your new families.                        


Prepared by:

Senior Deputy Shawn Pewsey

Supervising Deputy Probation Officer Andy Souza



News Release Date:

June 21, 2017


Media Follow-Up Contact:

Senior Deputy Shawn Pewsey (805) 933-6690

Supervising Deputy Probation Officer Andy Souza  (805) 981-5543



Approved by:

Captain Randy Downard

Division Manager Michelle Steinberger