Happy Tail: Meet Jackson

This Happy Tail is courtesy of Leah Kraus, from Dewitt, NY:

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“My husband Greg and I adopted Jackson when he was just 12 weeks old. To be honest, for most of my life before that, I held onto some misconceptions about pit bulls. Growing up in the suburbs, the pets around me were Labrador retrievers and beagles, bought through breeders or in pet stores. Growing up, having no exposure to the breed, I was raised with the notion that pit bulls were scary and dangerous. This was an idea I got from adults around me and stories I heard on the news.

“This all changed when my sister-in-law got a pit bull named Diesel as her family dog. As I got to know Diesel, I quickly fell in love. Diesel was one of the biggest, strongest dogs I had ever seen, and also one of the gentlest, most loving dogs I’d ever met. I began to realize that the impressions I’d had about pit bulls might be, well, just plain wrong.”

“In 2010, my siblings and our significant others started a tradition – instead of giving each other Christmas gifts, we’d give pet food and bedding to the CNY SPCA. In 2011, when we went to drop off our donations, we fell in love with a pit bull puppy, who had been dropped off at the SPCA with his six siblings. He seemed timid, and spent most of our visiting time curled up in my lap. We adopted him as soon as he was old enough to get neutered, and named him Jackson. He quickly gained confidence and energy outside of the shelter. Now, Jackson’s days are filled with all of his favorite things -long walks on the Canal, kisses, belly rubs and other doggie friends.

“Jackson has not only completed our family, but completely changed the minds of our family members, friends and neighbors. I remember the day I called to tell my mom I was considering adopting a pit bull puppy. She told me I’d be putting my future children in danger by adopting a pit. Now, she and my dad are Jackson’s #1 fans. They love to dog-sit their ‘grandpuppy’ and will tell anyone who will listen to them about how good Jackson is with his human toddler cousins. So many people who spend time with Jackson have the same reaction — “He’s a pit bull? Really? But he’s so sweet!” It goes to show you how much work still has to be done, but how one dog and one advocate can change many minds!

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“I’ve gotten involved with Cuse Pit Crew because I know that, like me, there are many other kids and adults locally who have been raised with false perceptions about bully breeds. And because of this, these families are overlooking adoption as an option.  I love that Cuse Pit Crew is shedding a positive light on the breed and expanding the minds of so many humans – thereby improving the lives of so, so many dogs!”

Pitbull guards owner, but is then taken away

A pit bull named Precious is stealing hearts and grabbing headlines. In a heartwrenching example of pet-owner loyalty, Precious sat by her owner April Newell’s side last Wednesday when the woman laid injured after a house fire.  precious2
But following this act of devotion, Precious is now unable to live with his owners.

Prince George’s County, Maryland, where Precious and her family resided, has a law in place that bans pit bulls.

Now, Newell must find a new home for Precious; some stories report she may be rehomed with her owner’s sister in a nearby county. Newell was able to get a second pet back in her ownership, because that dog is not a pit bull.

To read more about Precious and her story, click here.

To take a stand on ending breed-specific legislation that separates families, petition Congress!

To read more about why breed-specific legislation is ineffective, and the alternatives, view the ASPCA’s stand on BSL.

 

 

 

 

Fighting BSL for Dogs Like Stitch

Today, in tbsl-pit-bull-insurancehe small city of Council Bluffs, Iowa, residents are taking a stand to end breed-specific legislation.

It all started when Council Bluffs resident Shala Richardson was ordered to remove family pet Stitch from her household by a local animal control officer – all because Stitch is a pit bull.

Heartbroken, Shala is taking action. She’s collected signatures from over 700 local residents, petitioning to lift the city’s 10-year-old ban. The petition is now being considered by City Council.

Major organizations like the American Bar Association, the American Veterinary Medical Association and the ASPCA all oppose breed-specific legislation (BSL). However, hundreds of U.S. cities have bans against “bully breeds” in place.

We commend Shala and the residents of Council Bluffs for their efforts to repeal this ineffective and discriminatory law.

For the whole story on Shala and Stitch, read the full article.

To support Shala, sign her petition on Change.org.

To take a stand on ending breed-specific legislation, petition Congress!

To read more about why breed-specific legislation is ineffective, and the alternatives, view the ASPCA’s stand on BSL.

 

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Tips for Introducing a New Dog into Your Home!

The idea of introducing a new dog into your household can be exciting, but also daunting! How will the new dog get along with your current pet(s)?

Here are some great tips from Stephanie from A Positive Difference Training, that can help set you up for success with a new furry addition – whether that be a visiting friend’s pet, a foster animal, or a new adoptee!

Caitlin Simmons

Tips for Introducing a New Dog:

When you own a dog and a new one will be entering your home, there are several things you can do to ensure that the meeting comes off without a hitch.

If you know that both dogs are social, the meeting will hopefully be easy. But, sometimes, the dog may act differently in a new environment, or when introduced to new animals.

If you are uncertain how one (or both) of the dogs will react, be cautious and follow these guidelines:

Outside of the Home:

1. Introduce the dogs on neutral ground. Choose a place where neither dog is likely to feel territorial.

2. When the meeting occurs, have each dog on a lead, each with a calm handler. Keep the lead loose, since tension on the leash might communicate to the dog that you are fearful or anxious about their meeting. Walk the dogs side by side with a safe distance between them. Then, cross paths, still maintaining a safe distance.

3. Next, let the dogs meet. As the dogs approach each other, watch their body language closely, paying attention to the entire body. What you want to see is relaxed body language, maybe even a play bow (when their front paws go out and their butt is in the air). Sniffing each other’s rear ends is a good way for dogs to get to know one another. In fact, nose-to-nose greetings can be stressful for many dogs, particularly those who are fearful or feel threatened by eye contact. For these dogs, nose-to-nose greetings may cause them to make a bad decision.

4. Once they have a successful meeting, walk them side by side, allowing them to stop and interact for short sessions. Once you feel comfortable that the dogs have established a friendly relationship, it’s time to bring them into the home!

Inside the Home:

1. Pick up all bones and toys initially.

2. Over the next few days or weeks, allow them to have play sessions. When adding toys, make sure they are supervised.

3. If you are introducing a very energetic dog to a more laid back dog, watch for signs that the less active dog may need a break. You can separate them with a baby gate; this allows them to still see each other while taking a break.

4. Over time, the newness will start to wear off. You can continue to work on basic obedience commands to help with the transition and setting up the whole family up to live happily ever after.

Khaleesi the Pit Bull is on the Mend!

Have you heard about Khaleesi? She’s one special dog who is shining a light on the resilience of pit bulls even in the face of horrific abuse.

from Huffington Post

Khaleesi the Pit Bull

As described in an August 27th Huffington Post article, “Even now, while she’s in the thick of getting better herself, Khalessi is helping others of her kind.”

Khaleesi was found several weeks ago with half her face missing. Now, the dog is undergoing reconstructive surgery. The national attention she has gained has led to a huge rise in both fostering and financial donations to the organization that has been caring for her, Passion 4 Pits.

To find out more about Khaleesi, read the full article here.  To help other dogs like Khaleesi, visit our Get Involved page for ways you can help similar local dogs in need!

 

Happy Tails – Katie and T-Rex

When Katie Benware moved into her first home about a year ago, she knew she wanted to fill that home with a loving, furry companion.

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Sweet little T-Rex!

Enter T-Rex!

Luckily for T-Rex, Katie never considered getting a dog through a breeder or pet store. She knew there were so many great dogs out there waiting to be adopted!  Katie started her search for the right dog on Petfinder.com. And right away, she found her perfect match at the Dewitt Animal Hospital Shelter.

As a dinosaur lover, Katie loved T-Rex’s name. But when she met T-Rex, what Katie loved even more this sweet dog’s loving personality. Katie got some helpful tips from Caitlin from the Cuse Pit Crew before adopting T-Rex, including advice on introducing T-Rex to Strawberry, Katie’s cat.

Katie says that T-Rex is the most easily-trained dog she’s ever met, and the most loving of people. “She won’t stop moving for the first half hour when someone comes over, because she’s so excited,” says Katie. Katie has even taught T-Rex a unique trick: Katie says “Stick ‘ em up,” T-Rex puts up both front paws; then Katie says “Bang,” and T-Rex falls over backwards!

“There are just so many dogs waiting to be adopted– anyone can find at least one dog that you’ll love,” Katie says. “And even if the dog’s behavior isn’t perfect, organizations like the Cuse Pit Crew can help you with training tips and finding a trainer.”

We couldn’t agree more! Visit our Facebook page today to find more animals like T-Rex in need of loving homes!

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Celebrating America’s Best Friend: Strength By Our Side

July 3, 2015 – My inspiration for this photo shoot featuring CNY Veterans and adoptable pit bulls came from two of my best friends…the two “rocks” in my life: Mike, my boyfriend and combat Veteran; and Rocky, my rescued pit bull. This 4th of July weekend, we must remember that the pit bull has, and always will be, “America’s Dog” and our Veterans and Active Duty Military men and women will forever be our protectors. Together, they are “America’s Best Friend.”

Click Here to View All the Photos of CNY Veterans + Pit Bulls.

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Happy Tail: Meet Meatball + Doc

pit bulls and kids get along great!

It’s a Meatball sandwich! Trevor and Nathaniel snuggle with their pit bull, Meatball. Like most pit bulls, Meatball loves children.

May 31st, 2015 Written by Leah Kraus This happy tale is compliments of Stephanie Oot from the Syracuse area: “We rescued Meatball a year ago, when she was 4 years old. She was at the CNYSPCA and  won us over instantly. We visited her weekly while she was undergoing temperament testing. Finally, we got the news that she passed with flying colors! We were ready to take her home and introduce her to our sons Nathaniel and Trevor, and our cat Karate…

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