Friday, December 23, 2011

Snickers the Service Dog.

Thank goodness for these people- it is so easy for people to move and leave the problem unsolved- they are fighting the city and bringing national attention to this. I really hope Snickers gets to go home to his mom and dad soon.

Read more.

Want to read about a pit bull named Hooch who was a search and rescue dog on 9/11? Click here.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

No "Bones" about it...

NBC's Bones' creator and author of the best-selling "Bones" series, Kathy Reichs, has a prejudice against Pit bulls. As a faithful watcher of her show and a loyal reader of her book series (I've now read about half of them), I've started to pick up on some distrubing trends. I love her series and her books, but this is yet another example of the pit bull stereotype being propagated without any basis and without really adding much to the story. It is unclear how much experience Reichs has with pit bulls, but based on the way she describes them, I doubt she has much.

Whenever Reichs refers to a strong, threatening or menacing character, she says he looks like a pit bull. I'd say it happens at least once-three times per novel.

Recently, while reading Fatal Voyage, I came across this scene:

A tow-truck has just picked Dr. Temperence Brennan up and she is entering the shop with her dog, Boyd, a chow-mix, who is described simply as "protective" when growling at the pit. (FYI- a breed that also may have some difficulties getting adopted because of its bad breeding practices that have led to some aggressive tenancies- read more)

"The flesh on Boyd's snout compressed against his gums. His body tensed. The growl deepened [...] Bowman met us with a length of rope. 'Had this in back,' he said. 'Flush can be peevish.' ... Crossing the lot, I stepped through the door and circled Flush. An ear twitched, but he didn't look up. Maybe pit bulls are calm because they are secure in the belief that they can kill anyone or anything that provokes them. I hoped Boyd would keep quiet and keep him distance [...] Boyd was straining at his collar, every fiber focused on the pit bull. Flush was either sleeping or playing possum, waiting for the chow to approach."

Sarcastically, she adds... "The garage had the usual tasteful garage appointments. A calendar ... a cigarette machine [...] Three kitchen chairs. A pit bull."

This fine art photo is for sale by Etsy photographer Andra Lara for $25, click here.
So so many things about this passage disappoint me as a pit bull owner, who knows that my dogs are not different from other breeds (particularly Chows), and neither of whom would be as well behaved as Flush is described. (Winnie would attack Tempe with wiggles and jump on her waist, and Bruno would bark and wag, alerting everyone of the stranger present.)

Nothing in the passage about Flush was menacing, and yet, because he is a pit bull, something is conveyed to the reading audience, that she or Boyd are in danger. Even while laying sweetly, he is somehow described as suspicious... playing possum perhaps.

I seriously recommend Kathy Reich's books, they are intriguing, scientific, have great character development, and get me through me 3 hours of commuting each day, but hope that perhaps with a well-written letter (and a picture of my sweet pit bulls) I can convince her to stop referring to them so negatively in her best-selling books.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Who's there!?

Bruno and Winnie the look-out... not sure what for...

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Pittie of the Week: Lucy- A face you have to love...

Lucy does have a face only a mother could love, but being a pittie-mom, I love it.

Abuse and over-breeding of pit bulls is not just an American problem. This dog, Lucy was rescued off the streets of Bogota, Columbia where she was being beaten and forcibly and repeatedly raped by aggressive male dogs for breeding. She deserves all the love and comfort in the world. Her face my be disfigured, but it shows the world what she has been through, and will help many people understand the plight of dogs like Lucy who deserve so much more.

Here's her description from Strays from the Heart:

Hi my name is Lucy! I've was rescued from the streets of Bogota, Colombia and lived in a foster home over there for about 6 months before coming to the U.S. Prior to my rescue I was beaten by my former owner so badly that my nose and jaw were broken. Both body parts have already healed, but since they never set properly this gave me my uniquely good looks and character. What do you think? Unfortunately not much can be done about my face unless they break the bones and reset them again, not sure I want to go through that. Whoever did this to me also pulled out some of my canine teeth so I could not fight off the many male dogs that would repeatedly mate with me when I was in heat. Yeah I know, this is a terrible way to live. But although I was used as a breeding machine, by my lucky stars, I somehow got away. Then I was living on the streets, alone, emaciated and pregnant. Then that’s when my angel found me.

Upon examination at the vets office they found that my uterus was twisted and they had to decide whether to save my puppies or me. They chose me! They estimated that this was my 5th or 6th pregnancy in a row, having lived my whole life, 3.5 years, in an abusive home. When the neighbors found out I had been rescued, they approached my angel and told him that I was also used as a submissive dog in several dog fights in order to train aggression into the fighting dogs. So you see, I never reacted, because I’m a lover not a fighter! 

Thankfully some good people got together to bring me here and now I’m ready to find my forever home with a great family! I'm a bit shy of strangers but never aggressive and just need to build up my confidence with both dogs and people. As a matter of fact, where I’m staying now, they say I’m the sweetest thing! Always ready for a good belly rub. While my past has been hard, I hold no grudges. Typical to my breed, I just want to live and have fun!

I'm now spayed and have had all my shots, I’m in good health and can eat without a problem. I'm ready for a new life and new home! If you like short, stocky, 50-pound brown girls, then I know you’ll love me! Sadly, I’m currently living in boarding and would love to break out of here. If interested in adopting or fostering me please call Vivianne at 646-662-0251 –or- you can email her by clicking here! Woof!

To learn more about Lucy, or to foster or adopt her,  email or call Vivianne above, or email or call Beth Silberg at Strays from the Heart. ( / (347) 242-0459)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

What makes Pibbles special??

Stubby dog's post on what makes pibbles unique is SPOT ON.
I love it SO MUCH-I've reposted it below.

Couch/bed/blanket stealers? CHECK
Zoomies around the house? CHECK
Big pittie smiles? CHECK
Wiggle-butts? CHECK
Face-lickers? CHECK

Somehow Bruno and Winnie combined meet all the criteria Stubby dog describes for what makes a pit bull different from any other breed. I've had a Chocolate lab and a Wheaton Terrier, both have great qualities, but there is something about pit bulls- whether they are mutts or pure breds, that is completely unqiue, and if you have had one- you know what those qualities are- most notably complete love & devotion for their owners!

Yes, Pit Bulls Suddenly Snap

December 13, 2011  

Five things you’ve always heard about pit bulls and why they’re all true

By Micaela Myers

1. Pit bulls “suddenly snap.” It’s true. One minute they are lying upside down on the couch snoring, and the next minute they hear the word “walk,” or “rawhide,” or “ball,” and they suddenly snap. From 0 to Mach 90, they are doing zoomies down the hall, tongue flapping, tail tucked for turning aerodynamics. Jump in front of this joyful train, and you could indeed accidentally get knocked down! (photo by Donna J. Griffin)

2. Pit bulls’ jaws are unlike any other dog. Again, it’s true. Bullies have a singular type of jaw that enables smiling unlike any other! The lips curl up and wrinkle, and you can’t help but laugh at that happy pink tongue bobbing with each big breath, those shiny white teeth and those big twinkling eyes. (photo by Ronny Ag Roberts)

3. Pit bulls are tenacious fighters. Ever try and fight a pack of pit bulls for the couch? The bed? A soft, cozy blanket? It’s true, they love a comfortable place to sleep and would rather lie right on top of you or each other than be alone on the cold, hard floor. (photo by Janet Podczerwinski)

4. Children beware. If your child has a phobia for canine kisses, then he or she definitely better stay clear of pit bulls. Pit bulls have a special radar just for children. Smell one, and they start to lick their lips. They can’t wait to find that little kid and cover them in kisses. (photo by Colleen S Moore)

5. Pit bulls are the ultimate guard dogs. Maybe all robbers need is a little love? If this is the case, then yes, pit bulls make excellent guard dogs. Most will be happy to greet robbers with their wiggly butts. They may even show them where the couch (and TV) is, where the coziest bedroom (and jewelry) is, and invite them to stay and cuddle awhile. (photo by Cristina Falcon Seymour)
Those of us who really know pit bulls, know that they’re just dogs (OK, maybe they’re especially cuddly and goofy dogs). Now let the world know the truth about pit bulls! For a more serious look at pit bull myths and facts, click here and visit our resource page.
All photos courtesy of StubbyDog’s Facebook fans

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Doggies drive us nuts sometimes...

When Bruno and Winnie want more attention that we can give them because mom is busy applying to graduate school and dad is busy studying for law school exams this is what happens... They are banished to the crate to calm down for a bit.
Notice they can fit comfortably if only Winnie didn't hate it when Bruno rests his head on her bum ( yes she will growl a him for it!)

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Eukanuba Challenge Weeks 4 & 5

We decided to give it a little longer till we updated you all on the food challenge and it's a good thing!
For the first time since we have had him (over a year now) Bruno's coat it starting to soften and become shiny. He still (charmingly) lacks eyelashes - which causes his eyes to tear oh-so-cutely, but his ear hair is coming in nice and soft. (finally!)

The pups still love the taste of the wild salmon formula and since we cut back on the cups for Winnie we haven't seen the weight gain we started to see before.

The best thing about the food really has been that they have had no trouble adjusting to it- we have even had to go back and forth to their old food on trips to our parents' homes and they never had a single belly-ache!

We'll wrap up the challenge soon and let you know how you can win your own Eukanuba in the next post!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Drug use at ACC?

Check out this post by Urgent Part 2- Apparently ACC Director Julie Bank has been notified of drug use by her employees (employees who have in the past made life-ending mistakes by putting the wrong dogs to sleep!) and has yet to do anything about it!
Here's to hoping this outrage makes it on the news. The staff at ACC is already bad enough as it is, but for no one to care whether these mistakes happen (because they're all pittie strays anyway, right?), and for no one to seek out to correct these problems, is a real shame. I wonder how they would respond if a purbred dog was put to sleep days after arriving before its owners could find it, rather than just another stray? Every dog at ACC deserves a chance, and these low-life staff members are holding them back from that chance to survive.

Incompetence Running Rampant At NYCACC - PART 4 - Is Drug Use In Shelters Being Ignored?!?

by Urgent PART 2 on Wednesday, December 7, 2011 at 11:41am
Animal Care & Control of NYC is a place where dedicated volunteers and employees are fired for any attempt at all to blow the whistle on widespread negligence and neglect, or even just those that work too hard to get animals rescued.  In the past year alone, employees like Emily Tanen and unpaid volunteers like Rita Bar-Or and Jeff Latzer have been fired for little or no reason at all, with no thought given to the effect their absence would have on the care of shelter animals.

But what about employees who are part of the problem?  Shelter employees that get high at work, or come to work intoxicated while exhibiting disdain for the animals in their care?  Anyone who spends enough time at the shelter becomes very familiar with these people, but what is more shocking is that these people are in fact embraced by the administration.  Why would that be?  Because Julie Bank prizes a very certain quality in the staff she maintains: cold, heartless contempt for any notion of animal welfare.  As long as these people are not sticking their necks out for better care of the animals, all other issues of professionalism, responsibility and dedication do not matter; they will always have a job at ACC if animals matter as little to them as they do to Park Place management.

Urgent has been contacted by numerous rescue groups, adopters, volunteers and even a few staff about the condoned negligence that perpetuates in the mismanaged ACC shelter system.  We were also recently contacted by a concerned citizen of East Harlem who tried to do something about it.  This person (who for obvious reasons insists on anonymity) had inside knowledge of drug use going on at the Manhattan ACC, and even knew who was supplying it to employees. He spoke up about it to shelter administration, and like every volunteer or staff or rescuer who writes emails to shelter management with concerns about shelter animal treatment, he was ignored.  He even tried again, this time including every elected official whose email he could find.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: * *
Date: Mon, Jun 27, 2011 at 10:10 PM
Subject: Your last chance before I go on TV about DRUGS AT THE HARLEM SHELTER

Dear Julie Banks,

Why didnt you respond to my email?  It was a very important email about 4 workers at the Harlem shelter who do drugs, and none of you bothered to respond to me.  Do you only respond to white people with lawyers?  You think since I live in the neighborhood where your shelter is that I don't matter as much?

I gave you a list of four people that work in your medical office that use drugs even though theyre supposed to be saving animals. (I copied it at the bottom of this email)  Doesnt that matter to you?  Since I wrote that to you, I read about your shelter on the facebook, and I saw all the shitty things you been doing instead, like killing the wrong dogs and firing your best worker. Why dont you fire the people that are high at work instead?  Two girls on that list I sent you were even talking shit about how proud they was to smoke weed during work!!!  Dont believe me?

If you dont answer this email and drug test these people, i'm gonna get this up on the internet on that Urgent website.  Trust me, you dont want that.  And remember like i said, if you tell them even a half hour before that your gonna test them, theyll pass, and go on being high treating dogs.

This is your last chance julie banks.  Next time you hear from me i'll be on channel 5

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: * *
Date: Sat, May 7, 2011 at 12:31 PM

Dear Animal Care and Control,
I know for a fact that these four people work in the harlem medical department, and all use drugs all the time.  Sometimes they even use at work. You need to drug-test them right now, because theyre supposed to be helping the animals, and they cant do that if theyre high!  How do I know this?  I know the guy who sells to them.  I promise you, if you give them a drug test like all employees should get, and you dont let them know first, theyll fail. If you tell them even a half hour before, theyll pass (I've done it for jobs before, all you need is a drink from gnc).  But doing that when your supposed to save animals is just wrong.
Trust me, i'm not joking with you.  Don't put the animals at risk any longer!  And if this gets out and people know the vet tex are high, it will look very bad for nyc.
There names are:


And still -- nothing.  The people he implicates are still at the shelter putting animals in danger, including one role of particular importance: a New Hope rescue liaison.  The unanswered emails from the whistleblower also names a shelter behaviorist, a lead vet tech assistant, and a vet assistant. 

The biggest mystery here is why the shelter does not follow through on its pre-existing drug policy of random drug tests, and mandatory testing after a bite incident.  A shelter staff source tells us that the New Hope rescue liaison was bitten last year, but bragged about never being tested or she surely would have failed.  A second source from the shelter staff sent us the attached photo of drug paraphernalia found in the shelter backyard, with a note explaining that it was common sight at ACC.

So Julie Bank, maybe you'll answer Urgent instead: how could you ignore these emails and continue to put the animals' lives in the care of openly irresponsible and "distracted" people?  Numerous staff named in these emails work in the medical department, and the Manhattan shelter is notorious for its rampant medical "mistakes" that leave dogs, cats and kittens found stiff in their cages for lack of care.  The homeless animals of NYC deserve better than this, and the citizens of NYC deserve oversight into who their tax dollars employ.

The NYC Govt needs to know that you are outraged. Please go to this link for contact information:

Also, The New York State Dept of Health (not the NYC DoH) and the DEA would both be appropriate avenues to explore for complaints due to the involvement of controlled (Scheduled) substances. Those performing euthanasia MUST be registered with the New York State Dept. of Health to handle/administer scheduled drugs (see Section 80.134 of Title 10 regulations).

"The Department of State is committed to maintaining the integrity and competence of the licensees within its jurisdiction. Should a member of the public believe that a licensee has acted in an untrustworthy or incompetent manner, he or she may file a complaint with the Department's Division of Licensing Services. The complaint will be reviewed and an investigation will be commenced to determine whether the licensee should be disciplined. Both the licensee and the complainant are kept apprised of the proceedings.

A licensee who is found to be in violation of the law is subject to reprimand, fine, suspension or revocation."

A copy of the complaint form can be found here:

Coming Soon - Part 5 - You won't want to miss it...
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