Wednesday, November 25, 2009

LOUIE's Legacy Animal Rescue — CBS Early Show Thanksgiving Day

LOUIE was Emily's heart dog. He died in a horrible accident last January and she keened many months. In LOUIE's honor Emily is helping many dogs — all breeds, all mixes. From Hounds to Pit Bulls and back again. LOUIE's Legacy Animal Rescue of New York, NY, Bainbridge,PA and Cincinnati, OH will be featured along with Petfinder's "Foster A Lonely Pet for the Holidays" program, inspired by the movie A DOG Named CHRISTMAS, on CBS — The Early Show, Thanksgiving Day 7-9 am. LLAR has been asked to bring five dogs and one cat currently available for adoption through the rescue. The organization is in urgent need of foster homes, especially in the New York City area. Please help spread the word. So they can find loving and patient foster homes for their homeless dogs and cats this holiday season. A DOG named CHRISTMAS airs Sunday night November 29 on CBS. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, November 23, 2009

FAMILY TAP | Family and Miracles in Love Years — The American Pit Bull Terrier

Long time going we've been following the work of a group in San Francisco. From the staggering straight to the heart and come all ye faithful story of the Oklahoma Dogs — just keep reading down, you'll find it — to the 500 dogs of the Missouri epicenter dog fight bust . And on to the barn raising. That barn will help bust dogs in the future who'll need shelter and love and sunshine and rest. Before they go to rescue and foster and then — home. We decided we had to do something to help that barn raising. And to spread the word. About myths and fiction and facts. And miracles. Lots of miracles. So BAD RAP has a new sister on the East Coast. Family — because yep, Donna is right. Family is more than blood. Even though MANFRED - and other stuff - stopped our roll out from going full tilt we are here. Catherine Coulter who owns 300 East is letting us use her place. She hosted the Obama crew when they were in Charlotte last fall. Now she's helping the Pit Bulls. There's another lady who's helped us a lot who lives in Pineville. But that's another story. Stay tuned. We'll be at 300 East every Saturday. Stop on by. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Compassion — Hold

Chief Joseph said "It does not require many words to speak the truth." And — "We may quarrel with men about things on earth, but we never quarrel about the Great Spirit." Please think the words compassion holds. Then double click on them. Written by Molly Gibbs. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, November 6, 2009

Dear Old Man

I’m not that old in my heart, but the two-leggeds called me that when I came here, the first day I was not cold at night and the first day I was not hungry. The veterinarian said I am between 8-9 years old. Like many hounds who can’t hunt anymore I was abandoned, so I wandered a very long time in the woods. All the volunteers went to the lady in charge — it is called a rural high-kill facility — and pleaded for my life. They collected $200 so I could be treated for Heartworms. But I have to find someone who will promise to give me a home when my treatment is finished or — well, they told me not to worry about that. Miracles happen every day. If you want to know more about me please contact Samantha. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, October 9, 2009

So much depends

William Carlos Williams

so much depends

a red wheel

glazed with rain

beside the white

Dogs know this. People like Donna at BAD RAP know this. And - of course - Edna knew this. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, June 8, 2009

Floating Gardenias — One dog in Alabama

I have been doing things I've never done before these past eights weeks. Today I took two Gardenias from the front garden of the house next door. They're floating now in small glass bowls on my kitchen counter. My Mom used to do that in the house where we lived for three years. There was a Gardenia bush on the left hand side of the back door steps. Each day I miss Edna more. Each day I try to honor her. Some days I do an OK job. Some days not. This morning as I filled the small glass bowls with water I realized she would be proud of me. Today. Oh, and before I forget again. Thank you, Katie.. I sent Katie proposed copy for a then non-existent promo piece about Dog School for comments. She pointed out it might be a good idea to mention some of the behaviors a behavioral assessment and evaluation could address and change. I sent the proposed copy to a few people. Katie is the only one who answered. She is a very busy lady. We are all very busy people. But she cares. So she made time. Time is what we can all give. When we care. One dog in Alabama is counting on you. One voice counts. Sphere: Related Content

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Alabama Dog Fighting Bust—45 Dogs Seized, Remains Found

Courtesy ASPCA News Alert: June 5, 2009

"On Monday, June 1, a dog fighting operation in Randolph County was raided by the state’s 5th Judicial Circuit Drug Task Force. The ASPCA dispatched forensic veterinarian, Dr. Melinda Merck, and our Mobile Animal Crime Scene Investigation Unit to collect evidence in the investigation and aid in the prosecution of the case. Read about Dr.Merck’s crucial role in the investigation:"

"Dr. Merck examined 45 dogs who were discovered tied to heavy chains and living in deplorable conditions on two properties. She also examined partially buried skeletal remains of a dog found on site. In addition, controlled substances, illicit drugs and other paraphernalia related to dog fighting have been collected into evidence."

“These dogs definitely suffered abuse and inhumane treatment at the hands of dog fighters,” says Dr. Merck, Senior Director of Veterinary Forensics for the ASPCA.“So far, we’ve seen that one is unable to walk, another who is limping, and many who are injured, some severely.”

"As a result of ASPCA participation, two suspects have been formally charged. William Alsabrook was charged with two counts of possession of dogs for fighting, and Artis Kyle was charged with one count of possession of dogs for fighting, two counts of possession of a controlled substance, one count of possession of drug paraphernalia and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm."

"Check out video footage of the scene, and don’t miss our one-on-one chat with Dr. Merck about her role in this case." Sphere: Related Content

Monday, May 25, 2009

Swimming pool shadows - Michael Vick

"From me (Donna Reynolds) - I admit I'm stuck on this one because I just can't get myself away from the swimming pool in Vick's yard. I first learned about it while riding in the back seat of a federal agent's car that sweltering Tuesday back in Sept 07. The agent was assigned with escorting us to the various Virginia shelters so we could evaluate "the evidence" otherwise known as 49 pit bulls - now known as cherished family pets: Hector, Uba, Jhumpa, Georgia, Sweet Jasmine and the rest. I'm not sure if sharing insider information with us was kosher, but you know how driving down long country roads can get you talking. I imagine she just needed to get some things off her chest. She said she was having trouble sleeping since the day they exhumed the bodies on the Moonlight Road property. She said that when she watched the investigators uncover the shallow graves, she was compelled to want to climb in and pick up the decomposing dogs and comfort and cradle them. She knew that was crazy talk, and she was grappling with trying to understand such a surprising impulse."

"Her candor set the tone for this entire saga. Everyone we worked with was deeply affected by the case. The details that got to me then and stay with me today involve the swimming pool that was used to kill some of the dogs. Jumper cables were clipped onto the ears of underperforming dogs, then, just like with a car, the cables were connected to the terminals of car batteries before lifting and tossing the shamed dogs into the water. Most of Vick's dogs were small - 40lbs or so - so tossing them in would've been fast and easy work for thick athlete arms. We don't know how many suffered this premeditated murder, but the damage to the pool walls tells a story. It seems that while they were scrambling to escape, they scratched and clawed at the pool liner and bit at the dented aluminum sides like a hungry dog on a tin can."

"I wear some pretty thick skin during our work with dogs, but I can't shake my minds-eye image of a little black dog splashing frantically in bloody water ... screaming in pain and terror ... brown eyes saucer wide and tiny black white-toed feet clawing at anything, desperate to get ahold. This death did not come quickly. The rescuer in me keeps trying to think of a way to go back in time and somehow stop this torture and pull the little dog to safety. I think I'll be looking for ways to pull that dog out for the rest of my life."

"So that's where I'm at.  A second chance for Vick?" [SL Bill Plaschke: Don't be fooled by the 'new' Michael Vick ]

"An HSUS sponsored spokesman for ending torture? In my mind's eye Vick is still in the shadows at the side of that pool. As many times as this scene plays out my head, he hasn't yet moved towards that dog to pull him out. Not there yet." Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Rio Dulce and Arnicia

"It does not require many words to speak the truth." Chief Joseph. RIO - RIO DULCE actually - is a male 1-2 year old Pit Bull who fell on Hard Times. Last Thursday he ended up in my car on the way to the Spay Neuter Clinic at the Humane Society of Catawba County. RIO needs a home asap. Arnicia is a lady who lives in my hood. Who remembers - everything. She came by on Mothers' Day to say hello and give me some love. Said she'd been thinking about me. Knew I was probably having a bad day. Her smile and her eyes and her spirit are like sweet rain. And RIO DULCE - well, that means Sweet River in Spanish. Nothing is random. Thank you to NACAR's Ryan Newman and his wife Krissie. Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

I stand and watch her

"I am standing upon the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white sails
to the morning breeze and starts for the
blue ocean. She is an object of beauty
and strength. I stand and watch her until
at length she hangs like a speck of white
cloud, just where the sea and sky come
to mingle with each other."

"Then someone at my side says:
'There, she is gone!

'Gone where?'"

"Gone from my sight. That is all. She is
just as large in mast and hull and spar as
she was when she left my side, and she
is just as able to bear her load of living
freight to her destined port."

"Her diminished size is in me, not in her.
And just at the moment when someone
at my side says: "There, she is gone!"
There are other other eyes watching her coming
and other voices ready to take up the glad
shout: 'Here she comes!'"
"Gone From My Sight"
Hospice and Palliative Care
Charlotte Region Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, April 23, 2009

What would Edna say?

I finally found my Mom this morning. A red cardinal flying in the garden of the house next door. I am very relieved to know she is here with me. After she flew away I thought about what Edna would say about all the - umm - brouhaha sometimes associated with things that are new. New beginnings, new positions, new alliances, new partnerships, new coalitions. Some of her oft quoted sayings came to mind immediately. "Some people don't have the sense God gave a mule." "Be careful with your words, dear."And, of course, "You can catch more flies with honey than you can with vinegar." There are more, but these are for today. Sphere: Related Content

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Song for 146 dogs - Wilkes

The Wilkes 146 did not die in vain. Grandmother Earth and Grandfather Sky are smiling now.

From Donna's post on Thursday, April 16. "Lessons from BB and Gemma."

"In short - despite common misperception - the HSUS has never been in full control of the outcome of bust dogs. But rather, they have the ear of the authorities including and especially the shelters who trust them to know what they're talking about. Which is why it has been so incredibly important that the HSUS voice support for those of us who know the rescue angle."

"In the spirit of fine tuning our collective ability to say 'Yes' to bust dogs and to bring compassion to the dogs that can't be helped, I'm looking forward to working as part of the effort now officially known as the 'Victims of Cruelty Working Group.' The six participants all have hands-on experience and include reps from: the ASPCA, Animal Farm Foundation, Best Friends, NACA and - Yes, even the HSUS rep, now guided by their new policy to support evaluation and rescue efforts."

"I have to say that the original HSUS rep who tried to block BB's rescue has since changed his tune and recently shook hands on BR's mission. It took years of dialogue, but I've really grown to like the guy, even tho' early on I wanted to kick him hard in the shins. I hope we get to work together on the next bust in CA because he's a good sort with a thousand good stories and I would love for at least one of them to be about the next BB that he helped save. So yeah - I'm an optimist. After all, pessimism doesn't do justice to the dogs we've been called on to help."

"Let's be real though. Despite all our best intentions, the hardest part of this work will continue to be space issues in shelters as well as rescues. Busts happen year round (heads up east coasters: Boston Bust) ... and the rescues who routinely squeeze, rearrange and beg up foster care & boarding options know all about the dilemma of taking on too much. But it sure will be nice to have one less obstacle in the way when we're ready and able to help a few good dogs."

Want more inside scoop? Here's a lovely article from Best Friends on the Victims of Canine Violence Sphere: Related Content

Friday, April 17, 2009

I go looking

I go looking for my Mom everywhere. Sometimes I think I have found her when a Titmouse or a little brown Sparrow or a Bird with a yellow chest and a spot of orange whose name I do not know flies by in my back yard. But then they are gone so quickly. And I have lost her again. I know I will find her one day soon. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good news on bust dog summit in Vegas

Thank you Donna.

Friday, April 10, 2009

"The hardest part of going to Vegas for us addicted-to-fresh-air types is moving through the haze of eye-burning, tongue numbing cigarette smoke. The things we do for our dogs. The bust dog summit (named this for now only because it's late and my eyes are still burning and I can't think of a better name) came together as planned on Wednesday of this week. The gathering helped us solidify our partnership with Best Friends, ASPCA and Animal Farm Foundation and - especially - to deepen our collective commitment to dogs caught up in raids and larger cruelty cases. We were happy to bring animal control association NACA in as a new partner, too. And we'll all be looking for a formal policy statement from HSUS that was promised as a result of the meeting."

"As much as we would love to, it's not appropriate to share details of the meeting in this space, but we DID notice that someone at HSUS has removed a provocative webpage from their Animal Sheltering website, once entitled, 'Explaining Your Policy of Not Placing Fighting Dogs Up for Adoption.'"

"This now-defunct position statement has driven us crazy for years: "Once dogs have been bred and trained to fight, they may become dangerous at any time in the future, killing or injuring another dog, cat, or even human. The cruel training inflicted upon these animals makes them unpredictable—and unsuitable for placement into new homes." But apparently, it's gone -- and good riddance."

"More to come. For now, off to snuggle with my dogs, who are wondering where we've been and why we smell like Pall Malls."

"To the left is Uba, way back when he was still an enigma."
Posted by Donna at 12:25 AM

[Here is UBA now.
On the right hand side just under HECTOR and ERNIE. UBA is not an enigma anymore.] Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, April 9, 2009

True believers. The real deal.

WSPA. World Society for the protection of animals. True believers who walk their talk. 25 years and counting. 15 offices worldwide.
WSPA Member Society Network is the largest international alliance of animal welfare organisations in the world, with more than 900 member societies in over 150 countries. 76 in the United States. Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Bearing witness — Yes, Biscuit - Wilkes 146 & HSUS

"146 Pitbulls, including 19 pups still nursing from their dams, were killed on order of the court in Wilkes Co, NC in February 2009. Most of the dogs had been seized in connection with a dogfighting investigation conducted by local authorities in conjunction with the HSUS. The remaining pups were born after the seizure.
The two HSUS representatives whose testimony Judge Wilson relied upon to make the decision on what to do with the dogs were Amanda Arrington and Chris Schindler.

"Although Best Friends had made an offer to the county to save the dogs, their representative was not advised of this hearing which took place immediately after the third defendant in the dogfighting case plead guilty:

Best Friends Animal Society, which operates one the nation's largest animal sanctuaries, had contacted County Attorney Tony Triplett within days of the December raid. The group had offered to work with rescue agencies to place the dogs.

But when Judge Wilson asked yesterday if Best Friends had gotten involved at the last minute, Assistant District Attorney Fred Bauer told the judge that the group had called him last Thursday and Friday, and had called his boss, District Attorney Tom Horner, yesterday."

'That's just totally misconstruing the contacts we had with the county attorney and the attempts we tried to have with the DA,' [Ledy] VanKavage [attorney for Best Friends] said.

"She said she left a message for Bauer a month ago, on either Jan. 13 or 14, and had made at least three attempts to contact the DA's office. "I left a message for Fred Bauer and he never returned my call," she said."

"After court yesterday, Bauer said he couldn't recall if he'd gotten a message from Best Friends, but that he didn't intend to mislead Wilson and would clear it up with the judge today if there was any misunderstanding."

"The case had been set for trial next month. People working on rescuing the dogs thought they had more time."

"VanKavage said that when she learned about yesterday's ruling she called Wilkesboro attorney William Burke to seek an injunction against destroying the dogs. She said Burke reported that when he got to the courthouse shortly before it closed, the judge was gone and the order was already signed. She said that Burke told her he thought the dogs would be dead before he could get the request before the judge."

"VanKavage said that Bauer misrepresented her side's interest to the judge and it affected the proceeding."
"I think the judge wanted to hear our side of it and if we'd gotten some notice, we could have gotten into that courtroom, but the DA's office chose to stonewall us and because of that, these puppies died," she said."

"After reviewing a transcript of the court testimony of the HSUS representatives, it does indeed appear that the case for saving the dogs was "misrepresented":

MS. AMANDA ARRINGTON: Amanda Arrington. I'm the North Carolina State Director for the Humane Society of the United States. And our concern is that the only offer of help has been from Best Friends, but they are not offering to take these dogs.

THE COURT: They are not offering to take the dogs?

MS. AMANDA ARRINGTON: They are offering to assist. That is their language that they used. That means it would still be the county's responsibility. And in their own words, it costs about $190,000 per dog to rehabilitate them.

THE COURT: $190,000 to rehabilitate a dog?


THE COURT: That's what Best Friends says?


(Brief pause.)

THE COURT: Why is this the so-called humane thing to do?


THE COURT: Yes, ma'am.

MS. AMANDA ARRINGTON: For the dogs themselves, I think, because of the way that they were bred. I think it is an unrealistic expectation for us to ask these dogs that have been bred generations for fighting to become regular pets. And it's an even bigger thing to ask people to take on that responsibility and the county to take on both the financial burden and the liability. You know, we could be a couple years down the road and one of these dogs could do something, and I think it ultimately could come back on the county of Wilkes.

To be clear, Best Friends had offered the following:

Best Friends is willing to send a certified applied behaviorist out to evaluate the dogs and puppies. Of those who do well, Best Friends will fund their sterilization and transportation to responsible rescue groups.

I interpret that to mean the county would not be left holding the bag financially or liability-wise. And I'm sure the attorney for Best Friends would have explained that to the judge had the group been made aware of the hearing to determine what to do with the dogs.

More testimony:

THE COURT: Sir, did you want to add something?

MR. CHRIS SCHINDLER: I'm Chris Schindler. I'm the Deputy Manager, Animal Fighting Law Enforcement, Humane society of the United States.
You can't -- you know, even the puppies, you know, as you have heard, have been displaying those you know, those tendencies to start fighting with each other, and that's something you are going to see as they grow older. Most of these dogs, you won't know their true capability until they are at least 18 months old. These guys don't even test them for fighting purposes until they are 18 months old. So the likelihood of being able to hold these dogs until they are almost two years old to find out how dangerous they may be is unrealistic. I mean, housing them just for now has cost, you know, maybe more than $60,000, just to hold them until now, to this point. I mean, these dogs, they are not on the same level. You know, people speak about the Michael Vick dogs. Those dogs have not even been rehabilitated.

"Reading the HSUS testimony in the case is helpful in clarifying what was actually said and what the group's position was regarding the dogs. But for me, questions remain:

* Did the judge get the whole story in this case?
* Did the judge hear truthful testimony from the HSUS representatives?
* Who actually killed the dogs and how was the killing funded?
* Does HSUS honestly believe the Vick dogs have not been rehabilitated despite so much evidence to the contrary? And that it costs $190,000 to rehab a bust dog?
* If HSUS does an about-face and adopts some sort of policy to save bust dogs (my two cents) at their Las Vegas hotel gathering this month, can we trust them to follow through on it?
* Will HSUS use as many resources to save bust dogs in future as it has in past to get them killed?

To paraphrase the judge's question to HSUS: Why is killing unevaluated bust dogs the so-called humane thing to do? My response: It never has been and never will be. We are a no kill nation of owners who care about pets. We are the real humane society. Join us."

Every dog deserves a fair evaluation."


"More must-read commentary:"

Caveat: Time for the HSUS to Hit the Showers
Posted at 4:23 PM
Labels: dogfighting, HSUS, wildside kennels

mutineer826 said...

Liar, liar, pants on fire! Like I'm SURE they were paying $60 grand a month to care for the dogs...NOT. Receipts, baby, show me receipts.
April 1, 2009 5:09 PM
EmilyS said...

and will any of the koolkidz invited to that LV meeting with HSUS dare to confront Wayne with this?

I wouldn't bet on it, myself.

It's all about get along, go along, put it in the past. Why, HSUS might fund something for them! They have all those great programs, you know...
April 1, 2009 6:02 PM
jan said...

I'd like to hear a description of how $190,000 is spent for the rehabilitation.
April 1, 2009 7:47 PM
Caveat said...

Good post, YB! I put something up too, read yours after that.

I imagine they had to use the $60K figure because I think that was the ransom that Faron couldn't afford to pay to get his dogs back.

The wanking continues.

Bollocks on their 'pit bull' meeting too. The last thing I want is that bunch of snakes-in-the-grass - all of 'em - making things even worse than they are out here. If I want any s**t from the HSUS, I'll squeeze their heads - after pulling them out of their you-know-whats.
April 1, 2009 9:34 PM
Hero said...

Every time I think of the dogs that were ruthlessly murdered for being born a pit bull, it brings tears to my eyes. This has got to stop...killing without justice is not the humane thing to do! I thought even the judge was pathetic in this case...I don't know whether I should be angry or sad, but these dogs just deserved so much more. I hope HSUS and EVERY SINGLE PERSON involved in these killings burns in hell, I really do.
April 1, 2009 11:09 PM
sfox said...

I am totally disgusted with the "testimony", which would have been perjury if the HSUS lackies had been under oath.

The Best Friends folks must be seething. And HSUS, neener, neener, neener, we WON ::raspberry::, so there. Nice.
April 1, 2009 11:45 PM
Pai said...

Disgusting. For all those people who cried how 'unfair' to the HSUS we were being for accusing them of being culpable for the killing of those dogs, this testimony blows their outrage right out of the water.

It's disgusting that there is an 'H' in 'HSUS'. It sure doesn't belong there.
April 2, 2009 2:22 AM Sphere: Related Content

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Talking shop with Donna

LADY and SPIRIT and ARIEL and GHANDI and EMILY and HOMIE want to say we think you guys are they best thing since - umm - roller skates. So. Here's looking at you guys.
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Facing Peta and Talking (Shelter) Shop - New England in April!
Like any good pit bull centric activist, I can't look at the civil rights movement without drawing direct parallels between these historic struggles and those faced by the pit bull owners and BSL fighters of today. I really needed a little shot of SF-style activism last week and watching 'Milk' offered up the best boost in awhile. Harvey reminds everyone who struggles that "Hope is never silent," making a bigger statement is more important than winning smaller battles, and counting yourself as a proud member of your community is the best way to demystify a perceived threat in our all-too-often paranoid society.
Harvey also had Anita Bryant, who was so very helpful in galvanizing the LGBT rights movement back in the 70's and in illustrating just how freaky-deeky fear mongers can be. God bless Anita for being such a hateful little bee-yotch. We love ya, hon.

"If gays are granted rights, next we'll have to give rights to prostitutes and to people who sleep with St. Bernards and to nail biters." -Anita Bryant

...and pit bull owners! don't forget rights for people who sleep with pit bulls!
For our own inspiration, pit bull people have any number of vocal haters to bounce off of in this new century. Like, Ohio's Punish-the-breed Tom Skeldon (Skeldon update from KC Dog Blog) and Denver's own Kill-em-All Kory Nelson. But my favorite hater is PeTA. Their stance against pit bull shelter adoptions works through my veins like a triple-shot latte on an empty stomach and it's helped fuel up some of our best efforts to make things better for the pit bulls in our corners. I still owe PeTA a personal thank you.
I set out to 'debate' PeTA's shelter policy with Ingrid Newkirk back in 2006 at the HSUS expo general session, but she begged out the very last minute and I was left to banter with a pre-recorded DVD, which was essentially a large talking head of Ingrid waxing on about chickens among other not-so relevant talking points. I was seriously confused by that fast hour+, and so were the 900-some people in the audience.

Tim and Leslie met up with her later during this infamous book signing in a scruffy Berkeley bookstore. Nice - but not quite the audience we were looking for. Now! we can look forward to another opp to discuss our favorite topic with PeTA, this time in New Hampshire at an upcoming animal welfare conference. I'll be part of a panel discussion that looks at pb issues, including shelter adoptions and rescuing bust victims, and am fortunate to be joining Barbara Haysis, director of the Thomas J. O’Connor AC and Adoption Center and - Yay! - PETA spokesperson Daphna Nachminovitch.

"But it is important to bear in mind that nice families rarely come to a shelter seeking pit bulls. The vast majority of people who want pit bulls are attracted to the “macho” image of the breed as a living weapon and seek to play up this image by putting the animals in heavy chains; kicking, beating, and otherwise abusing them into aggression; and leaving them outside in all weather extremes in order to “toughen” them up." from PeTA's website
Another session will be devoted to - solutions! - on the topic of creating 'Successful Sheltering for Pit Bulls.'

I'll be outlining lessons learned from our work with various shelters including our new focus at open intake Oakland Animal Services. Marianne Gasbarrohas of the ever-progressive Animal Rescue League of Boston will take the reins next and discuss their methods for matching pit bulls to new homes.

The topic will unfold even further with a segment from the cool-as-a cucumber Berenice Clifford of Animal Farm Foundation, who will be detailing tips for kennel enrichment and keeping high energy dogs happy during their wait.

Good stuff. I sure hope some of our east coast rescue and shelter friends can join us for all or part..

2009 New England Federation Humane Society Annual Conference:
April 27-29 in Manchester, NH

Above: Pure thuggery. Chuy and gal pal Alex not only came to the Oakland Animal Shelter to adopt a pit bull (the ever macho red-caped Bob, to be exact), but ... They. Won't. Go. Away. Both have signed on to be volunteers and are frequently spotted walking dogs, educating the public, socializing rabbits and - gasp! - loving up on all kinds of shelter pit bulls as part of our Bully Crew Team. THUGS, I tellya! Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Stand Up Guy

One voice counts is about using your voice. Being a stand up guy. And walking your talk. We are two-leggeds committed to honoring and protecting the four-leggeds. So we ask for and give respect, space, and time. Our canine brethren in Tribe Dog give these to one another as a beginning to the dance. We believe by honoring the dance we can make life better for them. And for ourselves. Namaste. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Cry and stamp your feet and wonder

I'm kinda thinking this is a must read. If you're looking to find some wonderful stories, if you're looking for inspiration, if you're looking for news stories from across the nation about dogs - stories to make you smile, to make you tremble with outrage, to make you cry and stamp your feet and wonder - just - how the bleep - people can do the things they do - this is kind of a one stop shop. Do have to add though, because like Robert Evans flatly states in his magnificent chewed gravel smoked whiskey voice "There are three sides to every story - yours, mine, and the truth," - that for sure I do not now nor will I ever support the Center for Consumer Freedom. There are - um - some very informative posts here. As relate to recent very sad days in North Carolina. And like Che said "If you tremble indignation at every injustice then you are a comrade of mine."
Here's looking at you, Jessica. Love story of GUNTHER in Pass Christian. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Down to the bone, straight to the heart - grace note

Candlelight vigil tonight Wednesday 3.4.09 in Raleigh, NC at 7 pm. Down to the bone, straight to the heart. Many of you know about this story. In Wilkes County, NC 145 Pit bulls were destroyed on February 17, 2009. Approximately 75 were puppies. 127 were seized on December 10, 2008 in a bust. 18 were born since the raid, and - if their Moms made it to Wilkes County animal control - nursed like puppies everywhere do. They didn't know they were fighters. They didn't know they would become part of a horrible stain on the magnificent quilt of animal rights in this country. One of those little guys is - was - less than 12 weeks old. I don't know his name. Grandmother Earth and Grandfather Sky do. When you open the Winston Salem Journal link that chronicles this story you will see a lot of comments. At the end. Perhaps we - all - need to read those comments. Of course there are many pressing concerns each of us face every day. And not unlike The Little Prince some of us may well have matters of great importance to attend to. But really we all in our own way now are honoring the fallen. We honor them and we honor ourselves by bearing witness. Because there is no happy ending rehabilitation for these guys. No pictures in Sports Illustrated, no chance to become a therapy dog like HECTOR. No trip to Dogtown at Best Friends in Utah. Where they would have received all the time and respect any dog could dream of. No getting to know the guys at BAD RAP who would have moved heaven hell and just about anything in between to help. Please don't forget these guys. Maybe this story doesn't have the legs of the Michael Vick story. Maybe the photo ops aren't there. For anyone. Certainly not for the dogs. But this story cuts down to the bone and straight to the heart. Please support the coalition partners, BAD RAP (Bay Area Doglovers Responsible About Pit Bulls), Animal Farm Foundation, Villa Lobos Rescue Center, Downtown Dog Rescue, The Sula Foundation and Our Pack. Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Down to the bone, straight to the heart

145 bells to ring at candlelight vigil tomorrow, 7 pm, Raleigh, NC. You can find media alert on Best Friends site if you have not already seen it. More later. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, March 2, 2009

Preaching to the choir

My name is - umm - ANONYMOUS. I'm a German Shepherd Dog. They call me a GSD. But I'm really the same as any other dog. I just need time and respect to be a very good dog. Other dogs always understand that, but sometimes humans don't. I think some of them are starting to learn - how to - talk dog. And that makes me happy. I really just wanted to say that I think Pit Bulls are very cool dogs. People are thinking more and more about them and trying to help them. This year they had their very own day again. National Pit Bull Awareness Day.
"Because preaching to the choir makes a small church." Jodi Preis, Cookville, TN. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, February 23, 2009

Emily and Homie

EMILY and HOMIE wanted to know why they haven't been on the blog. I didn't have an answer so here they are. EMILY says sometimes she likes to pretend she is a Giraffe or a Monkey. HOMIE says he is crazy about EMILY but she won't pay any attention to him. So he asked me if I though it would help if he pretends to be sad and wistful. I told him games aren't usually the best way to get things done. It's better just to tell the truth. So he said he would think about that. And maybe tell her what is in his heart tomorrow. Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Jeff and Lola

The picture is Jeff Jenkins and J, one of the dogs he works with in the End Dogfighting Chicago campaign. Lola had a speaking engagement at the UN today so she was not available for a photo shoot.

Jeff Jenkins and his dog LOLA are making a difference one day at a time. For a sneak peak check out the Chicago Bulls Halftime with Jeff and Lola.

"Lola’s incredible journey from a rag-tag stray to a bona fide circus star is a truly remarkable story. From her humble beginnings on the streets of Chicago Lola has gone on to entertain, educate, and inspire audiences of all ages the world over."

"Lola started life as a throw away like so many other unfortunate dogs. But she possessed a remarkable spirit and was destined for greater things. When she met her future owner and trainer Jeff Jenkins she let him know right away what he was in for. She ran up to him and nearly tackled him hurling her entire tiny body at him. Jeff sensed there was something special about her, and knew if he could harness this ball of muscle and energy great things could happen. He pulled out a ball and threw it. Lola took off after it and brought it back as fast as she could. As Jeff reached down to get the ball from her, pleased that she showed such a terrific willingness to please and would likely train great, Lola spit out the ball and chomped on to Jeff’s finger with her little tiny puppy teeth. This would be the start of a great comedy team."

"Lola and Jeff managed to work out their creative differences and have gone on to travel the world over. From Jazz Festivals in Germany to Circus’s and Theaters all over the United States Lola has performed just about everywhere you can fit a flying circus dog. Most recently Lola has been added to the Chicago Bulls Entertainment Family where she can be seen delighting 20,000 people a game center court of the United Center."

"Lola has not forgotten her roots though. It is her mission to entertain, educate, and inspire as many people as she can. Jeff and Lola volunteer their services regularly for various causes that are related to animal and people welfare. Lola has brought her act to schools, park districts, retirement homes, correctional facilities, and animal adoption events all over the country."

"Lola is particularly proud of her ongoing program with The Anti-Cruelty Society of Chicago. Lola and Jeff take their act to the St. Charles Youth Correctional Facility and perform, talk, and interact with the young men who are incarcerated there. The response has been overwhelmingly positive from the young men at St. Charles. Opening their eyes and engaging their minds sparking dialogue about the treatment of dogs like her and its effects on society."

"Lola is much more than just an entertainer, she is an educator and an inspiration, not bad for a throw away!"

To see the beginning of Lola's story choose Circus Smirkus.

Lola is the only dog in The Midnight Circus. Which is one of the coolest things I've seen in a very long time.

And because of Lola Jeff Jenkins came to be the trainer for Pit Bull Training team in Chicago, part of the Humane Society of the United States End Dogfighting Chicago campaign. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, February 20, 2009

What the Hector?

Oh, Hector. When things are tough and - we are - many of us - still reeling from the events of this week here in North Carolina - you come in and give us hope and laughter and pride and the determination to keep on keeping on. We are so proud of you. A therapy dog, a Vick survivor AND just a great guy all around. So I went to YouTube and found the video your human made the very first time he met you. Wow. We love you, Hector. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Regional Briefs: 145 pit bulls put to death in Wilkes


WILKESBORO, NC -- Wilkes County Animal Control destroyed 146 pit bulls yesterday, following a judge's order.

The dogs were associated with Wildside Kennels, whose owner, Ed Faron, 61, was convicted last week of 14 felony counts of dog fighting.

Authorities seized 127 of the dogs in a raid on Faron's property on Dec. 10, 2008. The rest of the dogs were born after the raid. The county had acknowledged that some litters had been born, but yesterday was the first time that the county released the actual number of dogs involved.

According to a ruling Monday by Judge Ed Wilson Jr. of Superior Court, state law defines dogs as dangerous if they are involved in a dog-fighting operation, and a county ordinance requires that dangerous dogs be destroyed.

The raid was the result of a three-year investigation by the Humane Society of the United States, in cooperation with Wilkes County Animal Control and the Wilkes County Sheriff's Office. Representatives of the Humane Society told the judge that the dogs should be destroyed, because they had been bred for generations to be aggressive.

A number of animal-rescue groups had offered to place the dogs, but none of their representatives were at Monday's hearing when the judge was considering what should happen to the dogs. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, February 16, 2009

Operation Baghdad Pups

A great day in Minnesota.

An Iraqi puppy called Ratchet was re-united with a US soldier who adopted him in Iraq, after an international petition.

More than 65,000 people signed the online form urging the US Army to let the puppy go to the United States.

An animal rescue group picked up the dog, which was adopted by Army Specialist Gwen Beberg of Minneapolis in a case that highlighted military rules barring troops from caring for pets while in Iraq.

The US military said the dog was free to leave but American troops would not be responsible for its transportation.

It was the third try by Operation Baghdad Pups to get Ratchet out of the country on behalf of Beberg - the operation has cost an estimated $5,000.

Beberg and another soldier say they rescued the puppy from a burning pile of rubbish in May.

Operation Baghdad Pups. Sphere: Related Content

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Ernie and Hector

If you don't know about HECTOR and ERNIE you're missing a very cool story. ERNIE was a Vick dog but now he is rehabilitated. He has his very own blog. HECTOR - well, I told you about him on Thursday February 5th. HECTOR is one amazing dog. His friend ERNIE reminds me of PETE on The Little Rascals. For lots of neat info and pictures For the Love of Pit Bulls hops (I hop, you hop, he, she, it hops; we hop, you hop, they hop.). You can meet these guys and their friends on the Vick Dog Blog. AUDIE, GRACE, ZIPPY, JHUMPA JONES, UBA, JONNY JUSTICE, FRODO and TEDDLES. Well, that's about it for now. Sometimes you hop and sometimes you roll. That's how I roll. Sphere: Related Content

Elephants | Testimony

Tom Rider

Courtenay Tosti
Warning: 2nd paragraph under pictures of ALTA contains graphic description.

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If you want to learn more about Elephants: Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Hector — Mad about the Boy

HECTOR was a Michael Vick dog. Now he is a Bad Rap Dog. Well, um, actually he is just HECTOR. And he has his own blog. Some days life does seem fair.

["Mad About the Boy" is a song. Words and music by Noel Coward. Dinah Washington sings here.]

Sphere: Related Content