At the Northern Nevada Correctional Center, inmates aren't the only wild beasts that need taming.
Prisoners have been given the task of taming wild horses that have been rounded up by the states Bureau of Land Management which is in charge of managing nearly 40,000 wild horses and burros that roam on 26 million acres.
This year's goal is to remove 12,000 wild mustangs from the range, and most of the animals will be put in BLM holding facilities, while about 80 will be trained by inmates at the prison.
Warden Jack Palmer says of the unique prison program:
"This is in my opinion one of the best programs the Department of Prisons has. This program … it teaches these guys work ethic. A lot of them come into prison, and they don't have a work ethic."
It's not just the prison staff who believe in the program either.
Thomas Smittle, an inmate who is doing time for embezzlement, says:
"This program has forced me to look at myself and I really had to grow up to able to be successful at it."
Country singer and Let 'em Run Foundation President Lacy J. Dalton is happy that the inmates are doing this task and hopes it continues. She uses a western expression to explain the effect a wild horse can have on a man, saying:
"Out here, you hear it all the time, a cowboy will say, 'The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man.' "
We think this sounds like a fantastic program for the horses and the inmates.
[Image via AP Images.]
Tags: animals, bureau of land management, horses, inmates, nevada, trained, wild horses