Tillamook County Animal Aid, Inc. has teamed up with the Oregon Youth Authority's Camp Tillamook Work Study Center, and have created the O-YA DAWGS dog obedience training program. 

This program will focus on pairing up an adoptable dog from TCAA who would benefit from a structured obedience training course, with a trained Youth Participant from the Camp. The pair will work together in a structured environment and have a course outline, where each week our dogs will be trained a new skill. 

The expectation is for the dogs in the program to earn their Good Canine Citizen Award. We believe that dogs who earn this award, will make better family pets and be set up for a successful relationship with their new adoptive families. Therefore, diminishing the chance that dog will end up back in a shelter. 

The expectation for the Youth Participant is to gain skills and knowledge of dog handling and learn about the importance of responsible Dog ownership as well as be able to radiate that knowledge throughout their life to others. Working with rescue animals can teach empathy and compassion. We believe that the more Youth we can educate to work in Animal Welfare, the better off the world will be for generations to come.  We believe that they will gain confidence, leadership skills and know what it feels like to see their hard work turn into major accomplishments.

Meet Luna. 

Luna is our first O-YA DAWG dog candidate. She is the perfect dog to begin this journey with. 

Luna is about 9 months old. She was never given the chance to be a "Good Girl" with any proper training. Left to her own devices, she began causing problems in the neighborhood by terrorizing chickens and ducks. 

It was clear that Luna had suffered some traumatic treatment in her short life. She was incredibly fearful when someone would reach down to her collar. She would pancake her body and pee. The slightest touch to her backside would cause her to scream. She was terrified of men and untrusting. 

Since Luna has entered this program she has begun to trust again! Her brain is being rewired to count on humans to love her and give her affection. We are confident that with Victor's training curriculum and his positive and gentle approach, Luna will earn her Good Canine Citizen Award in no time. She will have the skills she needs to be a successful member of a loving family. 


The O-YA DAWGS program is incredibly lucky to start off on the right foot, with a very valuable youth participant, Victor. 

Victor has previously been involved in the "Project Pooch" at MacLaren in Woodburn, OR. The Project Pooch program is a very well established dog training based program that has years of success with dogs. Victor was a part of that. TCAA will hugely benefit from having Victor help build our programs and train other youth to train our dogs. We are so grateful! 

Victor has helped build obedience curriculums that follow a dogs progress from start to finish. He has successfully trained a handful of dogs already and is very eager to help TCAA and OYA kickstart the O-YA DAWGS program off on the right foot. We are incredibly lucky to have him be an integral part of the project. 

Photographed- Victor meeting our first O-YA DAWGS animal participant, Luna. 


Oregon Youth Authority • Dogs Assisting With Growth and Service

Meet Angel!

Angel is our second O-YA DAWGS canine participant. Angel came to our shelter in a very anxious state of mind with very little social skills. 

Angel is a young lass, barely one-year-old. At first, she was untrusting and nervous, but still yearning for affection. After regrouping she is showing us that she is a total tomboy! She's feisty, adventurous, bouncy and happy. Angel has also shown us how smart she is, she's catching on in her training fast. 

This fun pup needs a lot of attention, exercise, vigorous play, mental stimulation. She has a great shot at a happy life with the new skills she's learning with her trainer, Josif!


We are so pleased to announce our second O-YA DAWGS trainer to the training team. Josif is excited and eager to work with his first O-YA DAWG canine participant, Angel, and they have already created a wonderful bond. 

Josif, like Victor, has had some previous experience in the "Project Pooch" program at MacLaren in Woodburn, OR. He is able to bring his knowledge of Positive Reinforcement Obedience Training to Angel's world. 

With the wonderful training that Josif will provide for Angel, she will have a much more successful chance of finding her forever place in this world. This program will give her the skills she will need to be a successful family member and stay in her home for life.  

We are so excited to have eager and experienced youth participants at the Tillamook Camp. The program shows great benefits on our shelter dogs. The dogs come back from training in a calm state of mind. It is easy to tell that they feel more confident and focused. Great progress!