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From compactor puppy to therapy dog
compactor puppy to therapy dog.jpg
Photo provided A new leash on life. Ernie Bouldin has adopted one of the puppies pulled from a trash compactor at the Fairground’s Convenience Center and named it Samson.

The second of three trash compactor puppies has been adopted.

Samson, as he is now being called, was adopted by Ernie Bouldin from Warren County Animal Control and Adoption Center. 

“I had been thinking about adopting a puppy for a while now,” said Bouldin. “I’ve been looking for just the right one. My intent is to bond with it and when it’s older, train it to be my PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) therapy dog. I wanted a puppy that I could go through that process with as a way to bond. To be honest, I wanted a female.”

Bouldin said he was tagged in a Facebook post about three puppies being found in a trash compactor on the morning of Feb. 10, a story featured on the front page of the Southern Standard on Wednesday, but he didn’t go to the facility specifically to adopt one of those puppies.

“I thought I’d go into Warren County Animal Control and just see what they had,” said Bouldin. “There this puppy was lying on a mat and chewing on some newspaper. I recognized him immediately as the one from the trash compactor puppies. I picked him up and he started chewing on my beard. I asked him what he was doing and he started to fall asleep in my arms.” 

That contact began to seal the deal.

“I sat him down, he walked around a minute and came back to me,” said Bouldin. “I had been looking for just the right puppy, but I feel like he picked me. He wanted me, and I wanted him. That was it. Any thoughts I had of wanting a female were gone. He was definitely the one.”

A service dog for PTSD can help lessen the trauma associated with triggering events and going in public. An assistance dog for a person with PTSD is taught behaviors that help mitigate symptoms of the disorder. They help their owners better cope with those symptoms when they occur.