Canine Commandos is a program gifted students from Indialantic Elementary along with 21 other schools participate. The Canine Commandos go to South Animal Care Center in Melbourne if they are south of 520 Causeway in Merritt Island and Central Brevard Humane Society in Cocoa and Brevard SPCA in Titusville if north to train homeless dogs. The Commandos hope to improve these dogs' behaviors in order to help them find forever homes.
Once they arrive, the Commandos train basic obedience commands, "Watch Me," "Sit," "Down," Stay," and "Come" outside with the dogs secured to the fence to prevent the students from letting go of the leashes. Once the basic commands are taught, the Commandos go into the shelter to clicker train the dogs in their runs.
When clicker training, the dogs are in their runs and the Commandos stand in front of the dogs' doors. When the dogs are quiet and not jumping at their cage doors, the Commandos click and give them a treat. This makes the shelter quieter and the dogs more desirable for adoption.
We now socialize cats and at CBHS and SPCA, the Commandos agility train too.
The Commandos are always sad to leave because after training with these sweet dogs they get attached to them. But they feel much better knowing that they may have saved a dog’s life. It is very exciting to have a dog taken directly from the Commandos' during the training. We invite the public to go outside to watch the dogs in training. This often ensures an adoption.
The Commandos’ goal is to get these dogs adopted into good homes and spread the word to other schools so they can join in the fun, too!