Paws for Progress: Unleashing potential, improving lives

Paws for Progress CIC is dedicated to improving the lives of people and animals. Working across a range of settings including schools, prisons and the community, Paws for Progress develop and deliver services to help people most in need of support.

Our flagship project is our rescue dog training programme at HMP & YOI Polmont, established in 2011, which continues to develop and expand, benefiting both the young people and rescue dogs involved.

At Paws for Progress the well-being of both the people and the dogs is equally important, and we treat both with kindness, respect and empathy.

The dogs—they change the way you think and the way you act. They trust you, it’s that mutual bond. You think you’re helping them but they’re helping you too.” Student, Paws for Progress.”

Speaker: Dr Rebecca Leonardi PhD

Dr Rebecca Leonardi is Founding Director of Paws for Progress CIC, and in her role as Development Manager, is responsible for the development and monitoring of Paws for Progress initiatives. Paws for Progress works with a range of partners to deliver services centred on the positive effects that can result from dog-human interactions and relationships.

Rebecca is a dog training instructor (APDT UK), and in collaboration with the Scottish Prison Service, Rebecca developed and implemented the first prison based dog training rehabilitation programme in the UK. Rebecca is also key to the development of Stirling Human Animal Interaction Research (SHAIR) Centre, and in her role with the University of Stirling / SHAIR continues to ensure rigorous evaluation of Paws for Progress initiatives and build the evidence base in this exciting field of research.