Archive | January, 2012

An “Event”-ful Weekend!

31 Jan

We had a pretty awesome weekend – two big events, and lots of photos taken! The first event was on Saturday afternoon- Jennifer & I took Pinky to an adoption event for the Picasso Veterinary Fund of The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals!

What are you waiting for? Adopt me!

The event was at a prime location on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, just feet away from the beautiful Apple store, and a few short blocks from Lincoln Center. There was lots of foot traffic, plenty of dog lovers, and tons of fun. Pinky was on her utmost best behavior, calmly greeting other dogs and almost always keeping all four of her feet on the ground. We don’t know if she got any prospective forever homes that day, but what we do know is that she made lots of human and canine friends that day and proved herself worthy of the title Ambassabull. Check out these fun photos of Pinky in her Sirius Republic Spearmint Collar & Greta Flower, and Houndger.net “Adopt Me” vest. You’ll also see some pictures of our new friends Ginger and Rocky, who are also available for adoption through the Picasso Veterinary Fund!

Perfect Pinky!

Pinky's favorite place - a human's lap!

"Did someone say, 'treat'?"

Squinting Pinky

Pinky

Pinky's Sirius Republic Accessories

Ginger & Pinky

Ginger

Rocky

Rocky

Rocky

And then, on Sunday, Jennifer & I joined the first ever New York City pit bull pack walk, with our friends Havi and Law Student from Two Grad Students and a Pittie and G and Goosie Mama from Prettie Little Pittie, along with our new friends M & Remi.

As this was our first time out, it was a true experiment, and we learned a lot from it. But the best thing we learned was that we want to do it again! And again, and again, and again. It was great to have these five pups out and about and garnering lots of positive attention. We ended our walk at the iconic Bethesda Fountain and so many people came over to say hello and talk to us about our dogs!

The family at the beginning of the day!

Here are pictures from that fun morning in Central Park. It was bit chillier on Sunday, so foster dad insisted that Pinky adorn her Mascot Reversible Puffer Jacket – isn’t it nice how everything coordinates so well?!

Lucy

Isn't she gorgeous?!

Pinky's Nose

Pinky

Pinky

Pinky (she's a goofball!)

Havi wearing her backpack!

Havi dancing and sticking out her tongue.

G

G licking her lips!

Happy G!

Remi! She's thinking: "Squirrel!"

Remi

Remi licking her lips!

Special thanks to Jennifer for all of these amazing pictures!

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Adoptable Pittie of the Week: Cable

30 Jan

Our good friend Ann, of Canine King, passed this handsome boy on to us – it’s Cable from Yonkers Animal Shelter.

Cable’s Petfinder profile says:

“Cable is a large brindle dog with a very calm personality and a kind look on his face. He takes treats so gently, you would think he lived in a home and knew his manners, but he lived outside and wore a length of cable for his leash and collar. That’s how he got his name. I think if he was smaller, he would get more exposure and would have been adopted years ago! But, because he is a big dog, he doesn’t get out and walked as often as his smaller shelter mates do!”

From what we understand, Cable has been living at Yonkers Animal Shelter for two years, and no one can give it any other explanation other than his size. He’s just a gentle giant looking for a loving home. So if you or someone you know can give that to sweet Cable, please contact the shelter’s Volunteer Adoption Coordinator Leslie by calling (201) 981-3215 or emailing crysros1@aol.com.

Some of Josh’s Favorite Things

27 Jan

This month, my “favorite things” is going to start with my most favorite thing ever.

Now that the sappy part is out of the way, let’s move on to more fun stuff:

1. How to make a dog kennel from an Ikea shopping bag and camping mattress. I think Ikea Hackers is one of the most brilliant blogs around. Readers take products from Ikea and repurpose them or modify them to fit their needs, submit photos and instructions, and moderators post them for all to see. I have been inspired by lots of these projects, but this one speaks directly to the dog lover in me.

2. The HumungaStache by Moody Pet (and all of their other products). Hilarious. I wish I had enough to send every single one of my foster dogs home with one for all of eternity. Heck, I wish I had just one so I could make Lucy walk around New York City with it on!

3. Moleskine Passions Dog Journal. There seems to be a journal like this for every other significant event in life: births, Bar/Bat Mitzvahs, weddings, etc. So why not have a journal to document your new canine family member?

4. Here’s a “Dog Balancing On A Chain.” I saw this video on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and immediately shared it on my own Facebook page – but I also want to share it here. Dogs doing tricks like this amaze me.

5. The Animal Planet reality show Pit Bulls & Parolees. I know we all already watch this show, but it still deserves a shout out. Especially this video of an amazing Frisbee dog.

6. This photo from Love and a Six-Foot Leash‘s Facebook Page:

That would be the wonderful Sir Chick with his foster brother Snickerdoodle modeling some pretty darn fancy bowties from Sirius Republic! This photo led us to the discovery of our next favorite thing…

7.  A new line of collars from Sirius Republic that will benefit Love-A-Bull, an Austin, TX based pittie rescue and advocacy group through which Snickerdoodle is currently adoptable! Here are the new gorgeous collars, of which 20% of all proceeds will go directly to Love-A-Bull:

Head over to Love and a Six Foot Leash’s blog post for more information!

8. Lastly, we love CONTESTS! So here’s one for all of you. Leave a comment on this post with one of your favorite dog-related things: a product, company, service, video, blog – whatever! We’re leaving this open-ended because we want to know what YOU love. Tell your friends to tell us what THEY love. And what’s the prize for this fun little contest? $50 worth of food or treats (of YOUR choice) from Mr. Chewy (yet another one of our favorite things)!  Our winner will be chosen by an online randomizer and the only restriction is that you must comment by midnight tonight, January 27, 2012.

So get commenting, friends!

Yes, Dogs Go Missing

26 Jan

It is true, very good dog owners can lose their dogs. Currently, a good friend’s dog is missing in Aspen and another friend’s terrier was lost for three hours a couple of days ago!

And, I am embarrassed to admit, this week, I managed to lock my precious older dog, Rosie, the miniature pinscher, out of my apartment. She went roaming the building while I slept away with my other animals. I had assumed she went to her spot on the couch where she has been sleeping lately. When I woke up, I couldn’t find her! I couldn’t believe it…I searched high and low, but she was nowhere to be found. I am SO lucky that my lovely dog-owning neighbors took the “stray” into their home for the night. Rosie never left the building and probably was really only “lost” for about 15 minutes before she was “rescued” by my neighbors. Through a few signs I posted in my building and Facebook, all the dots were connected and I knew Rosie was safe

You must be wondering: why didn’t they call me? Well, Rosie recently lost her ID tags and I have been lazy in replacing them. Especially since Rosie is NEVER offleash (and I will never lose her)! Getting her an ID tag has been on the to-do list for a while. I have been planning on ordering one from Sirius Republic. I feel like a failure but after apologizing profusely to Rosie, I I will try to make some nice lemonade from this almost disaster…
As someone who worked in the shelter world for almost 10 years, we always preach, “microchip, microchip”…Well, it is super important to do that, but studies are showing that is just as important to have up-to-date ID tags. As Dr. Emily Weiss writes on her ASPCABLOG:
“The use of a simple ID tag that includes the name, phone number and address of the guardian would support community return of a lost pet. Ideally, lost pets with ID tags should never enter the sheltering system, as they are returned directly by the finder who calls the guardian’s number clearly displayed on the tag. This means we could decrease intake by increasing the use of simple ID tags.”

You can order high-quality, stylish tags through Sirius Republic or Red Dingo (where Josh got his ID tag for Lucy) for under $20!  Or, just head over to your local Petco or Petsmart, buy some tokens and make tags right on the spot!

Of course chipping is important, so if your pet isn’t chipped, contact your local shelter or humane society and see if they offer low-cost chipping. Sometimes groups offer special micro-chipping events! And, PLEASE don’t forget to register the chip if they vet implanting doesn’t. Even double check after the fact. Equally important is to remember to immediately update your registered information if you move.

And, in the case your dog does go missing, here are some reminders:

  • Fliers and Posters – the old fashioned way works! Make sure you have a clear photo of the dog. Post them at intersections, community boards, the location of where the pet was last scene, animal hospitals and shelters.
  • Visit the shelters in person – shelter employees and volunteers are busy. Make sure you go and look at every cage.
  • Make phone calls – don’t just rely on the internet and emails. Call every vet office if you cannot visit in person.
  • Notify your microchip company in case the dog ends up at a vet or animal shelter.
  • Social Media – use Facebook and Twitter to spread the word. Get a viral campaign going to help recover your dog.
  • And lastly, it’s sad but true, you should inquire with your local government on what agency is responsible for picking up animals hit by cars. For instance, a few years ago a local dog went missing. The owners did an amazing job of plastering fliers and contacting EVERYONE about their lost dog. They eventually were told to contact the NYC Department of Sanitation because they are responsible for picking up dogs that were hit by cars. Sadly, they found out their dog was hit by a car not too soon after she ran off. It was devastating news but at least they had closure.

The moral of my story is never take anything for granted. Leashes break, people trip, collars fail. Always have proper IDs and microchips. After this week, I am holding all my four-legged charges tight, making sure they always have tags, and laughing at this:

Wordless Wednesday

25 Jan

Does the breed really matter?

24 Jan

I assume I’m not the only one who is constantly asked, “What breed is your dog mixed with?”

I get this question at least once a day, but usually as a follow-up to: “What breed is your dog?” When I answer, “A pit bull mix,” that question immediately follows. And honestly, sometimes I wish I could ignore it. I love my dogs, no matter what their breed make-up is, so that question, and its answer, are completely inconsequential to me.

Regardless, I still answer, and I usually tell them something to this effect: “I don’t really know, she was found as a stray and I never spent the money to officially find out.” But part of me wonders why it really matters to them. For the most part, the inquisitor is a complete stranger, and we’ll most likely never see each other again. They like my dog well enough to pay attention to her, pet her, let her lick them – the whole works. So why can’t they just like my dog for the dog that she is and leave well enough alone?

Lucy

On the other hand, I sometimes love when they ask me what breed she is, because she’s such a great ambassador for pit bull type dogs. It gives me the opportunity, everyday, to change someone’s perspective; it opens up a conversation that allows Lucy’s new friend to accept her despite her breed’s bad reputation.

So I ask you again, readers, does the breed really matter? Is the real fact of the matter that we have great dogs, or do we, as humans, always have to categorize in order to make sense of things?

 

Adoptable Pittie of the Week: Mocha

23 Jan

Hi Everyone! Lucy here. Dad said I get to write about this week’s adoptable, Mocha. You know why? Well, remember when I told you about that very nice lady who found me on street? Well, she found this one running around in a place called New Jersey. Dad took me to New Jersey once and we had a blast! Well, enough about me. Here’s Mocha:

She’s just a little girl, just like me. I didn’t get to meet her myself, but Dad says she’s very nice, but a little shy at first. It looks like she has a lot of marks and scars, but I don’t think she’s in any pain anymore. Right now, she’s living with a nice family in Manhattan, but she’s looking for another place to call home, temporarily or permanently.

I like her eyes. Don’t you like her eyes? Dad says they’re the color of honey. Then Dad says that I can’t have honey. I don’t know what he’s talking about.

And she’s so teeny, tiny for a pittie – even smaller than me! She weighs about 42 lbs and is most likely fully grown. Her foster family is working on the same things we’ve worked on with our fosters: sit, and stay, and things like that. But she’s a smart girl. A trainer has even come to meet and work with her and was very impressed and smitten with her.

 I’m surprised she’s not here living with us, but Dad says he can only handle two dogs at a time, and no more. So, if you or someone you know can foster or adopt my pen pal Mocha, please write us an email at thattouchofpit@gmail.com. Dad and Jennifer will get you pointed in the right direction!

And thank you nice-lady-Debora for helping to save another doggie just like me!

Dog Park People

20 Jan

This video made us laugh, and think of some people we know from our local dog parks. Does it remind you of anyone you know?

A Really Good Job

19 Jan

Exactly one month ago, Pinky whirled into my life, and to be perfectly honest: I didn’t think I was up to the task. Remember that first post I wrote about her: The Whirlwind Foster? Well, it wasn’t an exaggeration. She had, and has, so much energy. But she did not get adopted as quickly as I’d initially anticipated.

A sidewalk encounter yesterday showed me just how far she’s come in this past month. The neighborhoods in New York are just like neighborhoods anywhere else. In fact, sometimes I think we get to know the other people in our areas better than in suburban places simply because of the close proximity in which we all live.

There are several people now in Hell’s Kitchen who know me as “the guy with all the dogs.” I think they know I only have two at a time, but over the past few years, they have seen me walking at least 7 different dogs. They’ve gotten to know them all, and I’ve gotten to know them. It’s been quite…interesting.

There’s one woman who I see everyday. No joke. I’m always either walking Lucy or my foster. Well, last night, I was out walking Pinky and we happened to be chatting with someone on the sidewalk who stopped us because he saw Pinky’s Houndgear Adopt Me vest.

Pinky was on her utmost best behavior. Sitting on command, not trying to remove her Halti, and being the amazingly affectionate pittie that she always is. And my neighbor noticed. She noticed the difference in Pinky’s energy level, the difference in her obedience, and the difference in the manner in which she expressed her affection.

She stopped for a few minutes to chat with us, and the first (and last) thing she said was: “You’ve done a really good job.” I felt a kind of pride that doesn’t come very often, and a resurgence in confidence that Pinky will absolutely find the right home.

Wordless Wednesday

18 Jan

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