Former convict helping dogs

An ex-convict is using skills he learned in prison to help dogs in mid-Michigan turn their behavior around.

An ex-convict is using skills he learned in prison to help dogs in mid-Michigan turn their behavior around.

"I deserved to go to prison and I did. And served 30 years," said James Blau.

Blau said he learned a lot doing time for murder. One of the most valuable lessons came from man's best friend. Blau worked with abused dogs during his stint behind bars.

"We would live with them 24 hours a day. And you really get to know the dog and you had to work through these issues," he said.

Blau just got out of prison the day before Thanksgiving. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business while he was incarcerated but he couldn't find a job in that career field. So, he started training dogs instead.

"Client after client was coming and they really liked how their dog would be. You know some would be in tears they couldn't believe that the dog had changed so much," Blau said.

That success led to Blau opening the Mid-Michigan K9 academy in Saginaw Township.

"I really love my clients. I'm thankful to them for coming to me and trusting me with their babies like Beau here, where I can work with him for a week and help them work through their problems," he said.

Blau tells me one of the biggest reasons he wanted to share his story is to inspire others.

"I hope it inspires my buddies and the guys all in the joint to know that they can get out, fill a need, fill a need and work hard and keep at it. Persevere and good things will happen," he said.

To learn more about the new K9 academy, check out their website.

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