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Portuguese Water Dogs & Pit Bulls: The Politics of the President’s Pets

By Edie Jarolim | Published: August 26, 2013

Will My Dog Hate Me?:  Anything that President Obama does is news, which goes with the Leader of the Free World territory. And when the President does something warm and fuzzy, like getting a pet for his family — as opposed, to say making recess appointments of agency heads – more sections of the blogosphere than just the usual political ones pay attention.

Bo and Sunny

Bo and Sunny, First Dogs (actually, first and second ‘First Dogs’)

The official announcement on the White House blog on August 19 read:

Today the Obamas welcomed the newest member of their family – a little girl (puppy) named Sunny!

Sunny was born in Michigan in June 2012, and arrived at the White House today. Just like Bo, she’s a Portuguese Water Dog, which works great for the Obamas because of allergies in their family.

Sunny is the perfect little sister for Bo – full of energy and very affectionate – and the First Family picked her name because it fit her cheerful personality.

In honor of Sunny, the Obamas are making a donation to the Washington Humane Society.

Lots of people had something to say about this. 

Normal people’s reactions

Here is the typical normal pet lover’s reaction to the following film, released by the White House along with the article:

Awww!! She’s so cute! She plays so well with Bo, who was lonely for doggie company before Sunny came along. It’s nice that the family got a breed that Melia, who has allergies, could enjoy. It’s nice that the Obamas donated money to a shelter.

Awwww!! Ooooh! 

Reasonable and useful reactions from the pet community

This is a teachable moment. The Daily Beast had a sensible article by a veterinarian that includes information about whether you should get a second dog, introducing the second dog to the first dog, etc.

All good things to know. 

Well intended but misguided reactions from the pet community

A piece from the Christian Science Monitor, titled New White House pup Sunny: Why not a rescue dog? is typical of the reactions of the “should have adopted” community. After a feel-good introduction, so as not to antagonize everyone who had the above-mentioned “awwww” reaction, such pieces cite a well-known figure in the animal welfare community to make the case.

Cue Wayne Pacelle, director of the Humane Society of the United States:

[Pacelle] noted on his blog Tuesday that the Obamas made little reference to exactly where Sunny came from, other than to note that it’s the Great Lakes State.

But given her pure-bred status, it’s unlikely that Sunny came from a rescue organization or a shelter. [emphasis mine, and not sourced to Pacelle]

“As we always say in such circumstances, we hope the Obamas considered adoption or rescue as the first choice in obtaining a pet,” wrote Mr. Pacelle.

Like all the other should-have-rescued articles I came across, this one misrepresents or ignores one bit of important information: That about 25% of dogs in shelters are purebred. There is a breed rescue for Portuguese water dogs, as there is for most breeds.

The fact is, the Obamas went through a reputable breeder for both Bo and Sunny. If they had ordered Sunny over the internet or bought her at a pet store, the pet community would have something to squawk about. But reputable breeders play an essential role in the world of animal lovers. It would be a good thing to emphasize that more, and scold less. 

Off-the-wall reactions from the pet community (or an ostensible member)

Yes, pit bulls can be sweethearts

Yes, pit bulls can be sweethearts

This article from Salon.com titled Another Portuguese Water Dog? The Obamas Should Have Made A Different Statement is likely just link/click bait because it is both ill-informed and wildly off kilter. It starts:

Bo Obama, America’s first dog, has a new playmate named Sunny and the first family is getting criticized for not adopting a mutt from the animal shelter. If the Obamas had gone to their local shelter, the Washington Humane Society, they wouldn’t have found a purebred Portuguese water dog. Instead, they might have come home with a pit bull — and that would have been a good thing.

There are three problems right off the bat.

  • The link in “the first family is getting criticized” clause directs us to PETA. A writer who knew anything about animal welfare would know that criticism from PETA means diddly squat — and especially in the context of an article related to pit bulls. PETA advocates that all pit bulls that turn up in shelters be put down.
  • What part of “the Obamas need a certain breed of dog because Melia has allergies” doesn’t the author understand?
  • As I noted above, 25% of dogs in shelters are purebred. You cannot say with authority that the Obamas would not have found a purebred Portuguese water dog at the Washington Humane Society.

I have written often here about how pit bulls are unfairly demonized. But bringing a rescued one into the White House is a ludicrous idea, for many reasons; they are detailed in the 300 plus comments that this piece drew. I couldn’t have summed it up better, however, than commenter “Schmoopi”:

You are fucking kidding me, right? You want the president who can’t do anything without it being made political and a “Black thing”… to adopt a dog that is the stereotyped official dog breed of the ‘hood?…

I like pits. They are a much maligned breed. They are naturally sweet-natured, loyal and affectionate….Pitbulls are also heavily abused and over bred by idiots…. Nevertheless, I find the suggestion that my President, our first Black president, a man who spends every day being “nibbled to death by ducks,” should deliberately do something that would enable the racist trolls of our country to hit new heights of asshattery to be the dumbest thing I have heard all summer.

This leads me to…

Bat-shit crazy political reactions

The supposition that the name Sunny was chosen because it’s close to Sunni, the sect of Islam to which Obama purportedly belongs, may be a joke, but the observation made by the right wing Daily Caller wasn’t:

With the addition of Sunny, the Obamas now have two black Portuguese water dogs.

The Obamas do not have any white dogs.

As for more comments about how diabolical the decision to get Sunny was, see Atlantic.com’s Best Conspiracy Theories About the Obamas’ New Dog, Sunny., and you be the judge…

Boring but important political pet news that got lost in the Sunny fuss

While the President was busy not adopting a pit bull, he did something much more important. The White House responded to a petition asking it to “Ban and outlaw Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) in the United States of America on a Federal level!” with the following statement:

We don’t support breed-specific legislation — research shows that bans on certain types of dogs are largely ineffective and often a waste of public resources.

In 2000, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked at twenty years of data about dog bites and human fatalities in the United States. They found that fatal attacks represent a very small proportion of dog bite injuries to people and that it’s virtually impossible to calculate bite rates for specific breeds.

The CDC also noted that the types of people who look to exploit dogs aren’t deterred by breed regulations — when their communities establish a ban, these people just seek out new, unregulated breeds. And the simple fact is that dogs of any breed can become dangerous when they’re intentionally or unintentionally raised to be aggressive.

For all those reasons, the CDC officially recommends against breed-specific legislation — which they call inappropriate. You can read more from them here.

As an alternative to breed-specific policies, the CDC recommends a community-based approach to prevent dog bites. And ultimately, we think that’s a much more promising way to build stronger communities of pets and pet owners.

That’s a far better use of the President’s bully pulpit — pun intended — than making the family dog into a political statement rather than a pet.

What I would add is that at least the next time Bo gets to go on vacation on his own jet… he will have a four-legged companion to travel with… JOMP~

You be the judge…

Related:

Yet Another Taxpayer Paid Luxury Vacation For The Obamas, Including a Private Jet For The First Dog… Again

Obama admits to eating dog … fur finally flies

Bo Obama’s dog trainer dies at age 52 (Jan. 2011)

Bo the First Dog and His Trainer Arrive in Martha’s Vineyard… – Bo travelled on his own jet on the taxpayer’s nickel in 2011 as well. I’m as big of a pet advocate as anyone… but really? Guess we are off the green kick and global warming???

The mystery of Bo’s ‘Hawaii trip’ is solved: White House says he stayed in Washington and never went on holiday with First Family

President Bush and His Pets

Arrival of New First Pooch Imminent

Bush and Barney, Just Like Old Times

Busts of presidential pets Barney and Miss Beazley at George W. Bush Library

Presidential Pet Museum.com

August 28, 2013 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Dogs, Dogs, Just One More Pet | , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Deformed Pit-Bull Puppy Nursed Back to Health

Erica Daniel, a Florida woman who fosters dogs that need extra care, saved a pit-bull puppy from the trashand nursed it back to health from a debilitating, life-threatening medical condition.

11-week-old Harper was born with a condition called pectus excavatum, more commonly know as "swimmer puppy disorder," according to NBC’s "Today." Puppies afflicted with the disorder lie flat on their chests with their arms splayed out, resembling a swimmer in mid-stroke. Most puppies with pectus excavatum don’t survive, and Harper herself came very close to being put down before Daniel stepped in.

Daniel had not originally intended to keep Harper alive, but simply to give the puppy one day of love and affection before she had to be euthanized. "I had to show her what it was like to be loved," Daniel said. But as she spent the day with Harper and massaged the puppy’s limbs, the deformed dog began to respond and quickly show signs of improvement.

Instead of putting Harper down, Daniel had a vet perform a closer inspection, only to find that the pup was indeed far healthier than first thought. No longer doomed, Harper has received massage therapy and hydrotherapy. Now, only 11 weeks later, she’s walking on her own four feet.

"She’s a walking miracle," says Bev McCartt, Harper’s physical therapist. "She’s a real testament to a dog’s determination to get up and just go."

Image: Harper the puppy walking in grass

November 17, 2011 Posted by | Dogs, Fostering and Rescue, Just One More Pet, Pet Health, Success Stories, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , | Leave a comment

I Am Loved…

image

Pitti Kisses

 

So You Think You Know a Pit Bull Person?

The Stubby Dog Project

American Pit Bull Terrier Dogs… In Memory of Ace

Dog Rescued from Fighting Becomes Therapy Dog

Camden NJ – Officers Open Fire on Crowded Street, Killing Innocent Pit Bull Puppy

Supreme Court Strikes Down Law Banning Dogfight Videos

h/t to Deonia Copeland for photo!

August 1, 2011 Posted by | Adopt Just One More Pet, animal abuse, Animal and Pet Photos, animal behavior, Animal Rescues, animals, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, NO KILL NATION, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, Political Change, responsible pet ownership, Stop Animal Cruelty | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

So You Think You Know a Pit Bull Person?

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Jessica Biel and her Pit Bull

by Michael Mountain – Founder, Best Friends Animal Society and The Stubby Dog Project

People are watching as the gang approaches from down the street. There are about 10 of them, each tethered to a Pit Bull, all in uniform and on a mission.

The location is downtown San Diego. The “gang” is a group of young Southern California women who call themselves “Pretties with Pitties.” And their uniform is a hot pink T-shirt. The dogs are shelter pets sporting vests that say “Adopt me, I love to cuddle.”

“A lot of people have the perception that Pit Bulls are really for masculine guys and tough guys,” said Kerri Ewing, co-founder of Pretties with Pitties. “We wanted to show people that that’s not the case. They are great dogs for anybody.”

Pit Bulls are warm, friendly, family dogs and not at all like the caricatures that have been portrayed as in recent years. Ewing, a graphic designer and social media consultant, is about as far from the stereotype of a Pit Bull person as you can get.

Ewing, a foster mom to rescued Pit Bulls, has just placed Harry Potter in a great new home. Harry was found abandoned and starving near the Mexico border.

“He refused to believe he was anything but a lap dog,” she said.

In fact, Pit Bulls are as much an “everyone dog” today as they were 50 years ago when they were known as “America’s family pet” and, in the UK, as nanny dogs. And while Labradors and Goldens have been claiming that particular title more in recent years, Pit Bull people span the social spectrum, too. Here are some examples of that.

Won over by Pit Bull puppy

At her Hudson Valley estate outside of New York City, Marilyn Cohen is checking on lunch. That would be lunch for China, her 11-year-old Pit Bull who has cancer and is on a special diet prepared by the chef. Cohen, after all, is in the business of good food – she owns two top-rated restaurants in Manhattan. So only the best is good enough for China.
China is Cohen’s second Pit Bull.

“My twin sons were teenagers on vacation in Florida 11 years ago when they saw this Pit Bull puppy on the beach,” she said. “One of them decided they had to bring the pup home, and he paid his brother to drive her back to New York. That way, he could come home a day later and wouldn’t have to have me yelling at him. Of course, I fell in love with the puppy on the spot. We called him Morgan.”

When Morgan came down with lymphoma some years later, Cohen became obsessed with finding a cure – anything that would save Morgan or even just give him a little more time. “I almost gave up my businesses taking him from one vet to another. My dentist told me ‘You’re crazy; you could have bought a condo for the amount you’ve spent on that dog.’ But not long after that he got a dog himself and admitted that ‘I would have spent any amount on that dog. They’re family.’ ”

Cohen’s husband, Dan, is an Israeli film director, who’s worked mainly in Germany and is best known in the United States for his 1978 movie Madman, starring Sigourney Weaver. Today, he’s at work on a novel that tells a fictionalized version of the family’s Pit Bulls, which he’s also planning on making into a movie.

Does your State Senator have a Pit Bull? Connecticut’s does.

Equally passionate, and a staunch member of the unofficial community of Pit Bull people all across the country is State Senator Bob Duff of Connecticut. “My family and I have adopted two abandoned Pit Bulls, welcoming them into a home with two small children without fear. We’re proud and lucky to have them in our lives,” he said.

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Connecticut state senator Bob Duff’s family includes a Pit Bull

Don’t judge a book by its cover!

Christine Craig grew up in Miami where her parents had emigrated from Haiti in the 1960s. She recently received her MBA, and has been in marketing for several years.

“I couldn’t have told you what a Pit Bull was,” she said. But she adopted one of the puppies after her ex-boyfriend’s Pit Bull had gotten together with the Rottweiler across the street.

“I’ve had Diva nine years. I don’t think of her as being a big dog like a Rottie or a German Shepherd,” Craig said. “But people still seem surprised that I have a Pit Bull. I think they see me as a rather demure person who should have a dog who fits in my purse!”

Craig thinks that most people assume that Pit Bulls are a man’s dog. “Their perception of the dog doesn’t match their perception of my personality. But that just means they don’t know Pits!” she said.

In the city of sin

Across the country in Las Vegas, Tino Sanchez believes that most people in his part of the country really do understand Pit Bulls. He says they know that most of the fear of Pit Bulls is fostered almost entirely by the media’s negative portrayals.

Sanchez, a disc jockey, is a regular volunteer at the city animal shelter, and helps get the dogs ready for new homes. Right now he has five Pit Bulls at home, two of whom are certified therapy dogs.

“Yes, I get weird looks sometimes when I take them all out for a walk,” he said, “but nothing like as much as I get positive reactions. People are always coming up to me asking ‘Why do these dogs have such a bad rap when they’re such good dogs?’”

Rags and Riches

At either end of the economic spectrum you’ll find Gary Michelson, a California, Forbes 400 billionaire and the spinal surgeon who invented spinal implants, and David Love, a homeless man in Brookings, a small town on the Oregon coast.

As a dog lover and, especially, a Pit Bull lover, Michelson is using much of his wealth to help animals, offering $25 million to the first inventor of a safe and effective injectable sterilant for cats and dogs, and another $50 million to support the research and development of the product. His goal is to replace spay/neuter surgery, which is comparatively expensive and time-consuming, and so to reduce the numbers of unwanted, homeless dogs and cats coming into shelters.

In a different way, Love also strives to do the right thing for the world around him. On any given day, he can be found checking on his friend, Buddy, another homeless man, who, like him, gets around in a wheelchair.

Buddy lives more than two miles away. But it’s an easy ride for Love.

“Kitty is my motor,” he said with a grin, referring to the Pit Bull he adopted and who has become not only his best friend but also his official chauffeur and unofficial service and therapy dog. “I’d always been told they were bad dogs, but it’s all in how you teach them. She’s a very gentle dog and she’s great with kids.”

Love has several medical problems, and Kitty has become his lifeline, who enjoys her daily exercise pulling the wheelchair around town.

“She seems to know I’m going to have a seizure before I do,” Love said. When that happens, Kitty takes over, putting her head on his legs and looking at him. “She blocks me from going anywhere!”

Obama’s classmate at Harvard

During the week, David Isaacs is a media entrepreneur, but he often takes time out over the weekend to help find homes for homeless pets. One Saturday morning, he was volunteering for a local rescue group at a table outside a pet supply store on the Upper West Side of New York City. One of the dogs the group was hoping to find a home for was a sad-looking Pit Bull.

“Molly was cowering under a table, so I offered to take her for a walk,” Isaacs said. “I took her for a stroll in NYC’s Central Park. She had a long scar along her back, and she was just terrified, grazing against the wall next to the footpath. I sat down with her, hoping to calm her down a bit. Moments later, she crawled into my lap, curled up and went to sleep.” Isaacs took her home and she’s been part of the family ever since.

Isaacs studied law at Harvard and then at the Harvard Law School, where he was in the same class as Barack Obama. Today he lives with his wife and young daughter in Santa Monica, Calif.

“When we had our baby, a number of people in my wife’s family were concerned,” Isaacs said. “I told them about how in England Pit Bulls used to be known as nanny dogs. But it was soon clear that my daughter could poke Molly, pull her, even ride on her, and Molly just loved her.”

Isaacs said Molly is also the single greatest lover of cats. “The only risk to the cat is that Molly will suck her in through her nostrils when she gets up close to sniff them!”

So who’s a Pit Bull person?

From presidents (Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson) to pop stars (Pink, Madonna and Usher); TV personalities (Jon Stewart, Cesar Millan, Rachel Ray and Dr. Phil) to athletes (Shaquille O’Neal, Serena Williams, Anthony Kim and Amare Stoudemir); and actors (Jessica Biel, Michael J. Fox, Jamie Foxx and Brad Pitt) to legends (Helen Keller, Thomas Edison and Humphrey Bogart), Pit Bulls are the beloved pets of people of every kind.

So, you think you know a Pit Bull person? It’s easy; they’re really no different from anyone else!

This article first appeared here on zoenature.org. & Cross-posted at DogTime


Michael Mountain is one of the founders of Best Friends Animal Society, the nation’s largest animal sanctuary and one of the pioneers of the no-kill movement for homeless pets. As president of Best Friends and editor of Best Friends magazine, he helped to build grassroots adoption and spay/neuter programs all over the country before stepping down in 2008. He currently is the editor and co-founder of Zoe — a new online magazine for people who care about animals, nature and the environment — and the co-founder of StubbyDog, which is working to change public perceptions of Pit Bulls.

Related:

Pit Bulls and the Media… Hooray!

Camden NJ – Officers Open Fire on Crowded Street, Killing Innocent Pit Bull Puppy

Supreme Court Strikes Down Law Banning Dogfight Videos

American Pit Bull Terrier Dogs… In Memory of Ace

Dog Rescued from Fighting Becomes Therapy Dog

Guarding Dogs  -  Documentary in the Making

Dog Fighting Game Released for Android Phones – CALL TO ACTON

May 13, 2011 Posted by | Adopt Just One More Pet, animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, Animal Rescues, animals, Dogs, Fostering and Rescue, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, NO KILL NATION, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, Political Change, responsible pet ownership, Stop Animal Cruelty, Stop Euthenization, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Pit Bulls and the Media: Hooray!

April 26, 2011

By Leslie Smith, (as first posted in Dogtime on April 19, 2011)

Hooray? Yes, hooray.

I noticed the link to a video clip titled, Blind kids get a helping paw from pit bulls, and I had to click. In it, Today Show correspondent Jill Rappaport reports on a pioneer program created by Main Line Animal Rescue: Pit bulls as therapy dogs at a school for the blind.

The clip is worth watching for several reasons, not the least compelling of which is the flood of shots of adorable pittie pups.

But as the video played, it dawned on me that the big news here isn’t about pit bulls comforting the blind. The real story is that a mainstream media network chose to cover pit bulls in a positive light. This is huge. Not to mention highly unusual.

The report wasn’t perfect. More than once, Rappaport brings up the breed’s flawed reputation. Ok, fair enough. But in speaking to Main Line’s founder Bill Smith, she insists, “This is definitely an aggressive… not aggressive, but dominant, breed…”

Smith half-corrects her, reminding Rappaport that pit bulls were bred to fight each other, but remain loyal and gentle with humans. Any dog, not just a pit bull, can (and likely will) become aggressive when treated cruelly or violently.

Ultimately though, Rappaport’s message is accurate and hopeful. Pit bulls can become aggressive when in the wrong hands, but when treated with love and respect, they are just dogs. Just dogs. Today Show anchor Meredith Vieira reiterates the sentiment at the close of the segment: “Dogs are like people. Some can be good, some can be bad.”

It doesn’t surprise me that such a strong bond between blind kids and misunderstood dogs has been forged. But it is ironic that there are still “normal” adults who can’t see the light.

Did you know? 

 

The classic children’s television show, The Little Rascals, featured an American Pit Bull Terrier as “Petey the Pit Bull.”

 

 

Video:  THE REAL PIT BULL THE WAY THEY WERE INTENDED

h/t to Stubby Dog – Cross-Posted at Ask Marion

Related:

Camden NJ – Officers Open Fire on Crowded Street, Killing Innocent Pit Bull Puppy

Supreme Court Strikes Down Law Banning Dogfight Videos

American Pit Bull Terrier Dogs… In Memory of Ace

Dog Rescued from Fighting Becomes Therapy Dog

Guarding Dogs  -  Documentary in the Making

Dog Fighting Game Released for Android Phones – CALL TO ACTON

May 5, 2011 Posted by | animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, Animal Rights And Awareness, animals, Dogs, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, NO KILL NATION, Pet Abuse, Pet Adoption, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, Political Change, responsible pet ownership, Stop Animal Cruelty, Stop Euthenization, Success Stories, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

American Pit Bull Terrier Dogs… In Memory of Ace

In Memory of Ace

who has gone to Rainbow Bridge

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Ace With His Sister Paige a Pit Bull Mix

A  Dog’s Purpose? (from  a 6-year-old)

Get a tissue before reading…

Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog’s owners, Ron , his wife Lisa , and their little boy Shane , were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.

I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the  family we couldn’t do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.

As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane  might learn something from the experience.

The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker ‘s family surrounded him.. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few  minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.

The little boy seemed to accept Belker’s transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker’s Death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives.

Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, ”I know why.”

Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me.  I’d never heard a more comforting explanation.  It has changed the way I try and live..

He said,”People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life — like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?” The Six-year-old continued, ”Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don’t have to stay as long.”

Video:  Behind the breed:  American Pit Bull Terrier Dogs

There really  are no mean or bully breeds there are just mean and bully breeders and owners.

A lot of people seriously don’t know what an American Pit Bull Terrier is. Watch this video and you will understand the breed allot more. Most people that claim to own these dogs really don’t. They own mixed bred dogs that are designed using the American Pit Bull Terrier. Allot of these crosses have American Bulldogs added in for size and strength and some even try adding Bullmastiffs! Both the American Bulldog and Bullmastiff are much larger and more powerful dogs then the American Pit Bull Terrier. That is one of the reasons they are used to produce the dog commonly seen today. Allot of these dogs end up in shelters. In reality, the true APBT is, in my opinion, one of the best dogs you can own, if you know how. Dogs are pack animals and you need to make sure you’re the pack-leader without ever hitting or abusing your animals. You also need to make sure that you can handle a dominant breed.

The true American Pit Bull Terrier is a small to medium sized dog that gets 15 – 21 inches at the shoulders and
22 – 65 pounds. Anything more then 70 pounds is obese and/or a mutt.

In this video you will learn:
*- What a true American Pit Bull Terrier is and how to know.
*- How to tell the difference between the true APBT and the Fakes.
*- How to know if the breeder is a legit, educated, responsible, reputable, respectable breeder, and also how to tell if they are a “Back-Yard” breeder.
*- You will also learn the “Pit Bull” isn’t a breed, its a term used to describe a certain group of dog breeds. “Pit Bull” isn’t a breed itself, though.
*- You will also see some of the breeds commonly confused as an APBT.

And many more ….

Dog Rescued from Fighting Becomes Therapy Dog

September 1, 2010 Posted by | animal behavior, Fostering and Rescue, Just One More Pet, Pet and Animal Training, Pets, responsible pet ownership | , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Adopt Just One More Pet… There Is Always Room For Just One More

THIS IS BUDDY NOW!!!!!

Tracey’s Photos – Buddy, my sweet and handsome foster (slash that) adopted boy

I got Buddy about 4 weeks ago. Initially I was getting a black female pitty…and after paying for basic vetting, I heard nothing. Then one Saturday I get a call that a brindle will be delivered on Sunday. He was perfect when he went into vets’ in Georgia, she told me, but has nicks from an aggressive dog that they crated him with. So I thought nothing of it. Then it appeared to spread. Turns out it was Demodex.

I had him on a probiotic as well as awesome dog food and gentle essential oils. It didn’t help. I took him to vets’ and they gave me a strong anti-biotic (because of infection), a medicated shampoo and Demodex med. It got worse in just two days..LOOK AT HIM!!! I called several vets including my own, who said that it would indeed get much worse before getting better. The mites are freaking out and the infection is working it’s way out..thus the hugely swollen jowls and throat. I wonder would it have gotten to this had I known he had Demodex. He is in pain and I am now broke!! It CAN be very costly, especially if it becomes infected. So far it has cost $800., not including initial vettiing. I got it covered, but this is PRECISELY why pitty’s get returned if they have skin disease. It isn’t as easy to clear up as one might think.

I HAVE BEEN SLEEPING WITH HIM ON HIS DOG BED EVERY NIGHT!!! I AM WITH HIM ALL DAY LONG. HE IS GETTING MUCH LOVE AND PROPER CARE.

Good job Tracey!!  We would do it for our newborn baby and these fur babies are just as much our family once we commit!!

This is a great story!!  You are feathering your nest in Heaven!

As story goes…  “At the head of the Rainbow Bridge waits every animal that he/she encountered during his life time.” ~ some of us will need a lot of room at the bridge; sounds like you will!

Ask Marion – Just One More Pet

Let us all adopt just one more and help many more find a home!!

Rainbow Bridge

November 4, 2009 Posted by | animals, Fostering and Rescue, Just One More Pet, Pet Adoption, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, responsible pet ownership, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Save Sasha

Target: 1000 Plus Signatures

City of Windsor and The Provincial Court

Sponsored by: Kimberly Wilson

Save SashaMy dog Sasha has been deemed as a prohibited breed here in the City of Windsor.  Sasha is Not a Pittbull and I have a rabies certificate signed by the doctor at Lauzon.

Vet hospital here in Windsor with her breed as American Bulldog.

I have been served to go to court and prove she is not a Pittbull. The Veterinarians association does not allow Vets to determine the breed of an animal. The Vet himself told me that he is not qualified to identify a specific breed.

This leads me to wonder what makes the City Officials qualified to make that judgment.

Sasha has never harmed anyone nor has she ever caused trouble.
Please sign the petition and  help me save her life and try to put an end to the endless number of INNOCENT animals being put to sleep.

Save Sasha is also a facebook group with many photos of her.

Please if there are any Breeders, Judges,NKC,CKC,AKC  or any one else with credentials  please send a statement as to what your your years of experience and qualifications allow you to prove Sasha’s breed to be.

Any Information or advice  you can email me at single.mom.23@hotmail.com

Sign Petition At:  http://www.thepetitionsite.com/19/Please-Save-Sasha

Posted:  Just One More Pet

June 4, 2009 Posted by | animals, Pet Owner's Rights, Pets, Political Change, responsible pet ownership, Stop Euthenization, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Humane Society of the U.S. finally changes its policy on fighting dogs

 

Careful – you might get cuddled to death by this sweetie    Photo: BestFriends.org 

In a reversal of their decades-old stance, the Humane Society of the United States has reportedly decided on a new interim policy that all dogs seized from fighting operations should now be evaluated for their suitability for adoption on a case-by-case basis.  This is a reversal of longstanding HSUS policy that any dog impounded from a fighting situation was inherently too dangerous to be safely placed in a home and should therefore be killed by authorities as soon as legally permissible.

[Author’s note: Though it is common practice to refer to such government-sanctioned killings of animals as “euthanasia,” the Merriam-Webster definition of euthanasia is “the act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individuals (as persons or domestic animals) in a relatively painless way for reasons of mercy,” hence the term cannot truthfully be used to describe the killing of healthy animals who have not yet been determined to be irreversibly aggressive.]


Former Vick fighting dog Leo takes his job as a therapy dog very seriously  Photo: msnbc.com

The announcement of this change in policy came from the Best Friends Animal Society website, and has yet to appear on the HSUS website as of this writing.  A call to the Washington office of the HSUS was not returned.

The reversal comes in the wake of the recent killing of 146 pit bulls who were seized at or born after a raid on a fighting dog operation in Wilkes County, North Carolina.  Seventy of the dogs killed were puppies; nineteen of whom were born after the seizure had taken place.  The killings were ordered by Superior Court Judge Ed Wilson Jr. after testimony from local animal control officials and two representatives of the HSUS.  According the Best Friends website, Judge Wilson ordered that the dogs be killed “without evaluation to determine suitability for placement.”

Scarred ex-fighter, now therapy dog Hector snuggles with new mom Leslie Nuccio  Photo: Eric Risberg/AP

Prior to this incident, the Humane Society of the United States’ policy on fighting dogs came under public fire during the Michael Vick case, when HSUS representatives advocated the killing of all dogs seized from Vick’s “Bad Newz Kennels.”  Subsequent case-by-case evaluations ordered by Judge Henry Hudson revealed that only one dog was too aggressive to be safely placed with a rescue.  That dog was euthanized, another was euthanized due to severe health problems, and the rest were sent to rescues around the country.  Subsequently at least two of these dogs, Leo and Hector, who were considered experienced fighters due to their scars, have gone on to become therapy dogs who visit and comfort patients in hospitals.

I would like to note that I am a supporter of the Humane Society of the United States.  They have done unsurpassed work over decades to increase public awareness of cruelty to animals, including exposing the issue of puppy mills; their groundbreaking work in helping to pass Prop. 2 in California, which is an important first step in decreasing cruel farming practices; and their unparalleled work in exposing shocking cruelty to downed dairy cows headed for slaughter at the now-defunct Hallmark/Westland meat packing company, which led to the nation’s largest-ever beef recall. 

Their stance on fighting dogs, however, has been uncharacteristically rigid and inhumane and I am extremely glad that although it took the senseless, indiscriminate deaths of 146 dogs, HSUS is starting to reexamine their policy in this matter and the injustice of judging and condemning any creature without knowing them personally.

By:  Kate Woodviolet

Source:  Examiner.com – LA Pet Rescue Examiner

Posted By:  Ask Marion – Just One More Pet

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Dogtown

March 21, 2009 Posted by | Animal Rescues, Just One More Pet, Pets, Political Change, Stop Euthenization, Success Stories | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Dogtown

Nomination confirmation

National Geographic Channel’s “DogTown,” a series about the work Best Friends does saving the lives of dogs on a daily basis, is drawing more than just an enormous audience from all around the globe. It is also now drawing critical accolades from the animal welfare community: “DogTown” has been nominated for a Genesis Award in the category of “best unscripted TV series” for the episode called “Saving the Michael Vick Dogs.”

Presented by the Hollywood office of the Humane Society of the United States, the Genesis Awards honor television programs, feature and documentary films, and newspaper and magazine articles that raise the public’s awareness of the issues surrounding animal welfare.

“Saving the Michael Vick Dogs” is about the rehabilitation of four of the 22 pit bulls who were rescued from Vick’s dog-fighting operation and ordered by the court to live at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary. The episode follows Denzel, Meryl, Georgia and Cherry as they overcome the violence they had been subjected to in the past and as they learn basic skills that help them socialize with humans and trust them again.

“The nomination is a great honor, and a testimony to what a great job National Geographic has done in portraying the work of Best Friends,” says Francis Battista, one of the Best Friends founders.

The nomination confirms that “DogTown” is not just entertaining audiences, but is also helping change the public’s perspective on pit bulls, showing that even dogs who have been terribly abused can overcome their pasts and learn to love and trust.

“National Geographic Channel could not be more pleased with this nomination,” says Chris Albert, executive director of communications for the channel. “The important rehabilitation of the Michael Vick dogs became the breakout episode for this series, and we are thrilled that not only the show but the incredible people at Dogtown are getting the recognition they deserve.”

“Dogtown: Saving the Michael Vick Dogs” will be going up against “30 Days: Animal Rights” on FX, “Escape to Champ Eden” on Animal Planet, and “Whale Wars: Needle in a Haystack,” also on Animal Planet. Winners will be announced March 28 at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, California.

The new season of “DogTown” begins March 20.

Written by Ted Brewer
Photos by Best Friends staff photographers

As part of Best Friends’ 25th anniversary in 2009, our goal is to double our membership, so we can double our efforts to bring about a time when all companion animals have a forever home. What can you do to help? Give the Gift of a Best Friends membership to family and friends.

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March 4, 2009 Posted by | Animal Rights And Awareness, Just One More Pet, Pet Abuse, Pet and Animal Training, Pet Friendship and Love, Political Change, responsible pet ownership, Stop Animal Cruelty, Stop Euthenization, Success Stories, We Are All God's Creatures | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments