Archive for the ‘pit bull’ Category

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22 Aug 12

Underdog to Champion disc dog ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,

So another book about a dog – among the countless books out there that are about pets – Wallace the book is a page turner and surely stands out from the rest, in my opinion.  Now am I biased because I am a Pit Bull owner and advocate?  Maybe, but I think anyone who owns any kind of dog, who reads this book will be brought to happy tears, inspired by the people who never gave up on a dog, and his amazing journey along the way.

I can’t tell you how happy I am that Wallace’s story, and the tireless, dedicated efforts of his owners Roo and Clara Yori and his many friends, is going to be on the book shelves for the entire country to see.  I was lucky enough to read this prior to the release – and I could not put it down – many nights after long work days I would start reading it and next thing you know I have read for over and hour, and it’s the middle of the night – but loving every minute of this book that I didn’t want it to end!  The book is wonderfully written by Jim Gorant, who also authored The Lost Dogs about the Vick Dogs.  When reading it you feel like you are right there watching Wallace and Roo flip and jump through the air at each disc competition.

I knew of Wallace years ago, and became an instant fan when I heard about how he was dominating the disc dog circut – but I had no idea to the full extent that he did, how he got there and all the effort that Roo and Clara put into it.  Wallace was astonishing at weight pulling too – but Pit Bulls do tend to excel in weight pulling – so Wallace being a frisbee flying pit bull just warms my heart.

The story of how Wallace came to be, how he was rescued, trained in being a World Champion and National Champion disc dog, yes that’s right a world champion and national champion American Pit Bull Terrier disc dog is truly an amazing story.  And it just goes to show that dogs shouldn’t be given up on because of their breed, behavior or situation.  Dogs want to learn, be part of a family, have a routine and dogs are resilient – Wallace is the true spirit of resilience.  I can’t wait to see this book in everyone’s hands.  So  pick up Wallace coming out August 30, 2012, you will love this book!  And next week, in the ‘Where in the World is Max‘ contest, guess what the prize is?  Yep, yep that’s right you can get your paws on your very own hardcover copy of this book!  Be sure to check the Pet Events Newsletter on August 29th, 2012 for the giveaway – don’t get the newsletter? Sign up here.

Wallace we love you here on Long Island! I hope to one day get to meet you. :)

Wallace changing minds, one disc at a time.

photo by Josh Grenell

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04 Mar 11

Show me your PITS! ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,

Show Me Your PITS!

This coming Monday, March 7, 2011 there is a national Facebook Campaign is taking place called, ‘Show Me Your Pits!’  This second annual campaign is a simple, fantastic and fun way to spread awareness to show your love of Pit Bulls, the other good dog.  If you are a Pit Bull owner, aficionado or rescuer all you have to do is change your Facebook profile picture to a picture of your beloved Pit Bull on March 7th.  The event last year had about 322 participants that took part and this year there are already over 2,000 people planning to part take in the event, you know my dog Max will be gracing my profile picture!

The event was created by Christy Boecker who also started the Facebook group ‘Pit Bulls – The Other Good Dog’ in 2009.  Christy is a pet behavior therapist for almost 25 years and a Pit Bull Advocate for 10 years.  One day while working at a local animal shelter as the of Director of Operations, the plight of the Pit Bull touched her very deeply with the surrender of a lovely 6 year old Bully mix named Buddy.  Buddy’s owner was a military man and he was being transferred to a base that had Breed Discriminatory Rules and he could not take Buddy with him.  He had raised Buddy since a pup and was a loved member of the family that included 3 small children.  Christy immediately felt she had to do something more, and because of Buddy’s story is the reason behind the Facebook group and this second annual campaign.  The Facebook page has over 16,000 fans and growing and just goes to show no matter how the media has ruined perception of this breed, the American Pit Bull Terrier is a very loved and loyal family dog, they work as therapy dogs and police dogs, are smart, fun, funny, active, adorable, and of course ‘The Other Good Dog.’

In order to keep the fan base growing and the Pit Bull community involved Christy decided to start the Facebook campaign of changing profile pictures to Bully breeds in hopes of seeing their lovely faces all over facebook.

Christy is also a national co-speaker for a day long workshop designed for shelter staff and employees to better understand the Pit Bulls in their care and to adopt them out responsibly. The workshop has been sponsored by Petco Foundation and Christy hopes to reach most major cities in the United States during 2011.  Christy also hosts the ‘Bully Ball in the Park’ annually in her home town of Waterman, Illinois.  On a Sunday afternoon in mid September Bully owners can gather in the park to mingle, join contests and just have a good time.

Christy’s Pet Perfection will be if she can get over 5,000 people to partake in Monday’s ‘Show Me Your Pits’ event, so come you know you want to!

Max, AMERICAN Pit Bull Terrier, and he votes for only dog friendly candidates!

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22 Oct 10

Pit Bull Awareness Day ...

By Nancy E. Hassel, LIPetPlace

Did you know that tomorrow, Saturday, October 23rd, 2010 is the 4th Annual National Pit Bull Awareness Day? Started four years ago by an organization called Bless the Bullys  – they wanted to shed a brighter light on the positive side of this amazing breed of dog and their responsible owners. This breed, as most of us know, has been so brutalized by the media and in many instances by the human hand. But, and it’s a big but, the positive side of an American Pit Bull Terrier is that they are now used more and more as police dogs, drug detection dogs, rescue dogs and therapy dogs. Nothing proves this breed’s resilience more than the fact that a pit bull can be brought from the pits of hell like the Vick dogs, and have been completely rehabilitated. Many of these dogs are now working therapy dogs, yes that’s right living with families and working as a therapy dog. One of those dogs, Hector, is living with an amazing family in up-state NY that also has another world famous rescue Wallace the Pit Bull – a national Champion Frisbee dog – who they also rescued from an animal shelter.

On Long Island we do have so many responsible Pit Bull owners, but there is still a stigma with owning the breed. Really the stigma is ignorance – because many people just believe what the media has portrayed the breed as over the last 10- 20-years. But most likely the people judging this breed have never even met, played with, walked or been in the presence of a pit bull. Often times while out walking my own dog, people will stop me and say, “Oh he is so cute,” while they pet the dog and receive kisses, “what kind of dog is it?” Some people will back away when they hear pit bull – but more often people say, wow, what a great dog, or the media has ruined this breed, or something else positive. Which is a wonderful shift – but the importance of the national awareness day is still needed – because there is still much ignorance nationwide about this misunderstood breed. The fact that most people couldn’t even truly identify the breed should tell you something. Can you Find the Pit Bull?  There is a reason this breed is so popular – anyone who meets and plays with a pit bull, usually falls in love – can’t believe how fun, super smart, goofy, loyal, athletic and just plain sweet the dog is.

There are not any events planned on Long Island that I am aware of to celebrate this day tomorrow – but maybe next year all our rescue groups who work with this breed can come together and organize a celebration. If you have your own pit bull, walk your dog with pride tomorrow or light a candle for all those that have been killed. Always wanted a pit bull – first do some research, talk with other responsible owners about the breed and then you check out our local shelters – you may just find their big smiles and wiggle butts will capture your heart.