Good Deeds

Some of you may have been following our eventful weekend via social media, but for those of you who did not, I will try to start from the beginning.

Friday afternoon I received a facebook message from an acquaintance from high school. She told me that she had a pit bull that had been given to her because the owner was going to kill it for having pulled down the curtains. She said that it had been badly abused, and believed that it was suffering from a broken leg. She wanted to help him, but did not have the means to do so. She saw me posting about dogs all of the time, and wondered if I might be able to help. She said that he was less than one year old and endlessly sweet. I felt so much compassion of course for the dog, but also for someone who had put herself in harm’s way to help an animal, even though she knew she couldn’t care for it long term.

I’m sure I don’t need to give too much detail as to what happened from there. (Have I mentioned that I have the world’s most supportive husband?!)

Of course, I posted about it on facebook, to inquire if anyone might be able to help. I received probably 20+ offers to help pay for the dog’s care and veterinary needs, but no offers to foster. So what else was I supposed to do? I figured that if these people were so willing to help fund his care, the least I could do was provide a safe place for him to recover.

In spite of the hefty and unplanned medical bills they have been faced with recently, A Positive Promise Pit Bull Foundation, the rescue that brought Georgia into our lives, was eager to help us help this little dog. Especially when I shared with them the fact that so many people had already pledged their funds to help save his life!

The next morning I drove to pick the dog up. When I got there, I was instantly struck by how adorable this pup was! A small dog was jumping all over him, and he paid it little attention. He was wiggly and friendly, but non-weight bearing on his right hind leg. I noticed some swelling and bruising around the hip area. The girl and her grandmother talked about seeing him interact kindly with both children and cats. He willingly, yet haltingly, walked with me toward my vehicle, where we headed back toward home.

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Waiting at the vet. Practicing his yoga poses!

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Another high school acquaintance worked at a local veterinary office, and suggested that I bring him into the clinic for an initial evaluation. The facility is called Saxony Animal Clinic, and the doctor and staff there were absolute angels. Between them (though I’m not sure who specifically deserves our appreciation) our entire bill was covered. This included the emergency exam fee, radiographs, a rabies shot, a fecal exam, pain medicine, antibiotics, and (much-needed!) flea medicine. I cannot begin to convey the depth of my appreciation to them for being so kind, compassionate, and generous. Unfortunately, our worst fears were confirmed. The abuse that our little trooper endured resulted in a severely fractured femur.

1378643_10151900879292427_511742613_nThe vet who examined him advised that the break would absolutely require surgery, most likely to the extent of needing a plate and some screws. This was not a procedure that they could perform in their facility, and so she suggested some alternate clinics where we could be referred.

I made a few calls that day, but as it was a Saturday, I was not able to make much progress in terms of getting a quote. I have been told that surgeries of this capacity vary in cost between $1-$3,000, with our area typically being on the lower end of that estimate. I will be making some additional calls first thing Monday morning to hopefully get more information so that we can proceed.

Unfortunately, many of the people who initially pressured me to bring this guy home by offering to donate to his care seem to have disappeared. I am understanding that circumstances change, but am also hopeful that they will remain true to their word. We really can’t afford to cover the cost of his surgery, on top of his transportation, food and other needs, and the needs of our own pets. In spite of that, there are many generous people who have stepped up to help us, both in financial ways and in others. For those of you who have contributed in any capacity, please know that your selflessness means the world to me.

On a lighter note, we enjoyed spending the weekend with our new addition, in what we can only imagine have been some of the best days of his life. While he is relegated to our (finished!) basement due to his flea issue and our need to keep him separated from the other animals, he has a warm cozy bed, blankets, toys, and treats galore. He gets plenty of love and attention! We all enjoyed lots of time laying out in the grass while we soaked up the unique experience of the last bit of summery weather mixed with a vibrant blanket of fallen leaves.

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He already has some interested adoption applicants, and while we want to wait until after the surgery and recovery in order to accurately evaluate his temperament, preferences, and disposition (of course he won’t chase our cat… but then again, he’s not chasing much these days!) we are absolutely sure that he will make someone the most amazing family member. He is endlessly loving, affectionate, playful, and obedient. How someone could find ANY fault with this dog is still a mystery to me.

You may notice that we have left out an important part of his story… his NAME! While his previous owners called him ‘Ghost,’ we’d like to give him a new name to mark his new journey. A few top contenders include-

1) Kingston: It definitely fits his good looks

2) Tripp: the name suggested by our top donor

3) Bucco: to celebrate the Pittsburgh Pirates Pride in our area

We’d love to hear your input on what you think his name should be!

Thanks for all of the support and encouragement šŸ™‚ If you are interested in helping this deserving little guy on his road to recovery, you can share or donate to his fundraiser. It is appreciated more than you know!

 

 

It’s a Numbers Game!

It is estimated that onlyĀ ONEĀ in everyĀ SIX-HUNDREDĀ pit bulls finds a home.Ā Animal control facilities in cities all across the US have pit bulls numberingĀ 40 to 60%Ā of the shelter population at any given time.Ā It is estimated thatĀ 1 millionĀ dogs classified as a pit bull are euthanized each year (yes, this includes puppies!). The best (and sometimes only) chance a pit bull has at survival once admitted to an animal control facility, is by being pulled by a rescue. Rescues only exist with commitment from dedicated foster homes!

Our rescue partner is LCPO, or Luzerne County Pit Bull Owners.

In 2013, LCPO celebrated their SECOND birthday. In that short time, they have helped more than 150 dogs find their forever homes!

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InĀ 2013Ā alone,Ā SIXĀ of the lucky LCPO dogs have already found their forever homes.

They have also pulledĀ SEVENĀ precious pups from shelters in the new year. This brings the total current list of adoptable LCPO dogs toĀ EIGHTEEN.

TWOĀ of LCPO’s alumni have gone on to officially achieve their Canine Good Citizen Certification. Many more are in the works!

In 2012, LCPO took on some dogs with medical issues and/or special needs. Puppy Jora (who is still with the rescue!) required extensive mange treatment and other necessities, which totaled approximately $1,855. Next we have Miss Khloe, who is also still with the rescue. Her total is driven up by her high cost of boarding, spay surgery, and a few health issues, and has reached in excess ofĀ $1,215. Georgia was another needy lady (mainly due to the fact that her puppies also required care!) at $1,200.Ā LCPO has also taken onĀ SIXĀ pit bulls who happened to hear only with their hearts!Ā TWOĀ of these deaf pitties are still available for adoption.

In 2012, at least 66Ā of the LCPO adopta-bulls found their forever homes! These are all dogs that would have been put to sleep in shelters without the help of a rescue.

The average cost for each incoming dog in 2012 was $450. The adoption fee remains at a mere $200.

Borrowed from

Borrowed from ARF.org

While they focus first on finding forever homes for their adoptable dogs, LCPO reaches out to help dogs in many ways. LCPO offers the ‘NEPA Pit Fix Program’. This allows owners to have their pit bulls and pit mixes spayed or neutered for justĀ $50. This cost covers the expense of the surgery, pain meds, and a rabies vaccination. There is no limit to the amount of dogs that can be altered under this program!

LCPO currently operates with a dedicated team of 3 Directors, 7 Leadership Members, and many volunteers. Volunteers have logged well over 250 hours of service in the new year.

Last year’s 5k Race to Rescue raised much-needed funds for LCPO. Rachael L. was the top fundraiser, contributing $650 with her individual fundraising efforts. The 2013 5k Race to Rescue will take place on June 8th. My goal is to raise $500, and my total currently stands atĀ $395, with only 17 contributors. With every entry given the opportunity to win one of 11 prizes, those are some pretty good odds!

My favorite number? ONE. Sometimes looking at the millions of dogs that are hurting and homeless, can make our work as animal lovers seem overwhelming. However, if we take it one animal at a time, before you know it, you will have helped so many. Our fundraiser is one way that you can help!

If you are still interested in making a contribution, thereby becoming eligible to win any of the prizes listed below, please head here! You have until Monday, February 25th to make your donations, as we will be selecting the winners on Tuesday and making the announcements later that week!

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#1- Sugar Skulls bow tie fromĀ Little Bow Pup
#2- 3 Paintings fromĀ Yellow Brick Home
#3- Custom Collar fromĀ Sirius Republic
#4- Flirt Pole & Super Tug toy pack fromĀ Squishy Face Studio
#5- 3 Custom ID Tags fromĀ Sew Olive
#6- Custom Sweater fromĀ Tiennot Knits Sweaters
#7- Collar, Leash, & Harness package fromĀ 2 Hounds Design
#8- Two Shirts fromĀ Pitbull Shirt
#9- Small Smiling Pit Necklace fromĀ Lulu Bug Jewelry
#10- 8×10 Prints fromĀ DawgArt
#11- Interactive Puzzle Toy from Poochie Heaven

Leave a comment on this post if you have donated, and let us know which product you are most hoping to win! We will be sure to put in a good word for you šŸ˜‰

*Please note that all of the LCPO financial totals are approximations/estimations.

Fundraiser: Prize #7 – A New Leash on Life

If you read our little blog on even a semi-regular basis, by now you should know that we are offering a super awesome fundraiser that benefits the Luzerne County Pit Bull Owners, our pittie rescue, and also gives you a chance to win really cool prizes.

LCPO is currently (like, as I type!) saving 3 lucky pups from the New York Animal Care & Control. Most of us familiar with pittie rescue know more than we would ever care to learn about what goes on inside those walls, but for those of you that donā€™t, letā€™s just say that it is about the worst place any pup could end up. Not only do they produce mass euthanasia lists every night, but rumors of neglect and abuse run rampant, not to mention the noisy chaos and cluttered disorganization that can lead to kennel stress and cage aggression.

Candice, from NYCACC. New name TBD!

Candice, from NYCACC. New name TBD!

NYC's Charlie, new name TBD

NYC’s Charlie, new name TBD

NYC's Charlie II, AKA Zeppelin!

NYC’s Charlie II, AKA Zeppelin!

Walking a dog out of the shelter, through the doors to fresh air and freedom, up into your car to nestle with cozy blankets, and eventually into your house to decompress in comfort and quiet, might just be one of the greatest things you ever doā€¦. Not only for the dog, but also for yourself. LCPO is saving not just one, but THREE lucky dogs. While there are many loving, adoptable dogs behind those doors, the three that are coming to safety are about to have a whole new outlook on life. How cool is that?!

We all sit online each night, seeing the pathetic faces of dogs who face death while living a life behind bars. We wish we could do something about itā€¦ LCPO is one of the groups that actually DOES. Every. Single. Day. Let me be their voice, and ask for a little bit of help. Pulling three dogs at once is no easy feat, and they can use every penny we can bring them! Often when you make a donation to a non-profit, you get nothing in return, aside from the satisfaction of knowing youā€™ve made a difference. This time, Iā€™m offering you a way to simultaneously give back, and also take a little. šŸ˜‰

Each of the incoming LCPO dogs will be promptly outfitted with some brand-spankinā€™ new duds fromā€¦

Ā 2 Hounds Design: Collar & Custom Harness/Leash Combo

The brain, beauty, and brawn behind 2 Hounds Design is Alisha Navarro, a self-proclaimed collar addictĀ artist. 2 Hounds Design began in 2003 as a creative outlet to produce the perfect collar for her two Greyhounds, who are retired racers. She has now developed a team of people who all work long and hard to perfect the art of collar-making, here in the United States. They use only premium hardware and the finest quality fabrics. Alisha employs a hands-on approach, selecting each fabric and ribbon herself; from hand-loomed Laotian and Scalamandre silk, to French Jacquard Ribbon and Asian Silk Brocades, they produce a stunning and extensive selection of dog collars!

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What began as a way to create a special, custom-design for her own two pupsĀ hounds, turned into a dog-loverā€™s true life passion. Alisha considers herself lucky to be living her dream, and doing what she loves, all while providing customers with a great experience and one more way to (stylishly!) spoil their best friends. While this is how she makes her living, Alisha and 2 Hounds Design have helped to raise more than $350,000 for adoption groups all over the world. She does so much for the canine community, and makes an effort to give back in any way she can. One way that they do this is by providing donation matching. If you purchase one collar as a donation to your non-profit dog rescue group, 2 Hounds Design will match your donation for up to 3 collars!

2 Hound Designs are best known for their stunning martingale collars and matching leashes, but did you know that they also produce custom harnesses? Wiggles, Wags, and Whiskers is their sister company, which creates the harnesses you have seen on Georgia and her other LCPO friends. One of the common purchases is the Freedom Training Package, which consists of the harness and double-connection training leash. I can tell you from first-hand experience that the patented Freedom No-Pull Harness does exactly what it is designed to do, by featuring a loop on the back of the harness, which tightens gently around your dogā€™s chest. This discourages pulling and makes your daily walks a much more enjoyable experience!

Gia models both her 2HD cupcake collar and custom harness!

Gia models both her 2HD cupcake collar and custom harness!

To be eligible to win both a gorgeous collar and custom harness from 2 Hounds Design, you simply must make a contribution toward our fundraising efforts for LCPO, here. Minimum amount for eligibility is $10, though each increment of $10 will earn you an additional entry. Every little bit truly does help!