“Pit Bull” Awareness Month

Yep, I’m sliding into the wan

ing days of the month with this post but bear with me, I have my reasons.  Every October for the past several years I’ve embraced the concept of Pit Bull Awareness Month and celebrated all things Ray and Julius while working towards broad acceptance of seeing my boys and all other Pit Bull types of dogs as individuals, not as lumped sums of their breed, or breeds as the case may be.  My boys are both Pit Bulls in the broadest sense of the word and yet they share absolutely no similar breed DNA.  They are individuals.

 

Sugar, Julius, and Ray

 
In light of all of the ballyhoo with PeTa joining forces with the vitriolic group that I won’t link to here I was planning to sit out this round.  I was asked by a friend and fellow Pit Bull Coalition member to help find an avenue to help spread awareness to the right people.  Here’s the thing: in person I’m pretty confrontational and blunt.  If you threaten or malign my dogs (or anyone I care about) I could very easily try to pull your eyeballs out with my fingernails while trying to figure out ways to really hurt you but when it comes to mudslinging and manufactured “statistics” from zealots, I try not to give credence in the form of attention.  Much like when you are training a dog in a positive manner, you ignore the unwanted behavior and reward the desired behavior.

  
PeTa contends that it would be best to kill all Pit Bull types for their own good to save them from the criminal element who want to adopt them. There aren’t many words in that sentence that I don’t take issue with but many people more reasonable and more informed than I have addressed such lunacy, so I won’t bother other than to point out that of course, I don’t want to see Pit Bulls abused, but I don’t want to see any animal abused.  I just don’t think that killing them all will solve the issue.

  
In the vein of positive reinforcement, I also want to take this moment to write a bit more about what you might and might not see here.  Get it?  Same message but different delivery.  I have a pretty dry and sarcastic sense of humor but you won’t see me engaging in the tongue in cheek “pit bull attack” pictures of dogs licking babies.  Here at Peaceabull we don’t “do” the words vicious, monster, attack, or aggressive even if we are describing how heartily we show love and affection and we don’t assume (well maybe we do, but we don’t verbalize it) that you are working from a point of prejudice about our dogs.  You don’t like my dog?  I’m not going to assume it is because they are pit bulls, and by that assumption I am giving you the benefit of a doubt that you are not an asshole.  (Oops!  There’s the eyeball pluckers coming out!)

Ray’s Wheels

Well we had a super full weekend and I know Julius has lots to talk about but today I have an update on Ray’s leg.  The short version is that he is mending well and the surgery looks to have been quite successful. What that really means for Ray is that since we don’t really have stairs in the house he was cleared by Dr. Harry to not be in his little area all day but he will need to remain leashed when outside for the next eight weeks or so.

  
Ray’s visit to the vet went well, but took an awful lot out of him with the amped up nervous energy and all.  This was the first time he’s been in a vehicle since the surgery so even the jumping in and out of the Pittie Van is more than he’s used to.  When we returned home, he walked in the door like usual and went right to his ex-pen like usual. I went ahead and let him stay in there but with the gate open and walked away.  Just a few minutes later as Kevin and I were chatting in the dining room, Ray slinked by…I swear he was tip toeing…as if he was trying to get away with something.  He studiously didn’t look at us, because you know, if he doesn’t see us he obviously can’t hear us as he walked from room to room lying on all of the various mats while Julius began lying on all of Ray’s (obviously special) mats.

  
After the afternoon he had, he seemed to be favoring the leg we worked so hard to get better so we opted to return him to his rest area for the evening.  Although he was cleared, we will be working him back into the swing of things slowly.  Full house privileges will be doled out slowly and in moderation and in the meantime we will be searching for a suitable set of stairs for him to use to get into bed, when he’s ready.

I guess I was thinking that today would be the magical day when all of his rehab shackles would be shed and he could romp puppy-like to his heart’s content but this plan, while not as much fun will be better in the long run.

Gotcha!

I see from my TimeHop that today is Ray’s Gotcha Day and truth be told, I knew it was around now but I’ve let the exact date escape my consciousness. You see, because I was there to witness his birth I would have always considered him “mine” in some way. Connected.
I don’t feel the need to celebrate the day he came to live in my house as much as I celebrate and cherish the day he came into my world and into my heart.

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So while I might not be able to cradle him in exactly the same way, you can be sure that if we are in the house together, chances are we’re near each other.

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I know that my life course has dramatically altered since my little piggy came into my life. There are things I do and think and want and feel just because of him so with that inspiration, after just one more sleep, I’ll be leaving my Gotcha boy in the very capable hands of his human sister while the hubby accompanies me on the fulfillment of a dream.

Dogs as Art

While I do have some dog-centric art in our home, I don’t feel like there’s too much or even enough yet. (The hubby might disagree). The thing is, until recently I had lots of photos of other dogs in our home.

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Recognize any of them? This is a portion of a collection I’ve gathered from participating in fundraisers, whether it’s been for Handsome Dan or Strut Your Mutt or even smaller fund raisers for blog dogs.

Well, I finally found some frames I like and made some prints of the Peaceabull boys to adorn my shelves and will be planning to commission some more art this year.

Hmmm…is this post s hint of some sort?

Happy Birthday, Baby!

For some reason, the day always creeps up on me faster than I realize and this year was no exception. I guess it’s because it was so close to Thanksgiving this year and yet so appropriate, because I am  thankful.

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Three years ago today this little family entered my life.  To help a pregnant mama dog get shelter and be present while she gives birth was amazing.  That one of those puppies became mine is wonderous, and having two of the others still in our lives is incredible.

Ray has taught me so much about dog ownership and forced me to become a different person.  After having volunteered for this long, I can safely say he was one of the “worst” puppies I’ve ever met:  He was smart and challenging and high strung and high maintenance and loving and clingy but all mine.  Mama’s boy.

Life with Ray has been a crazy ride and the last year and a half or so has been so rewarding just to be able to see how far we’ve come as a team and to mark our progress with another passing year.  So to  my little heart dog, I say “Happy Birthday.”

Birthday Boy!

Birthday Boy!

 

 

In the Interest of Fairness

I’ve known that PetSmart had BDL pretty much ever since I had Ray, so close to three years.  While I know it is wrong, I didn’t really give it too much thought for two reasons.  One, there isn’t a PetSmart doggy daycamp near us and even if there were, we wouldn’t use them.  We are so in love with the care, attention and socialization that Julius receives at Paw’s-n-Claw’s that we wouldn’t go anywhere else.  And two, it’s hard to get past the fact that PetSmart does a lot for homeless animals.  Even for homeless Bullies.

Proud to be a Pit Bull

Proud to be a Pit Bull

There’s a huge push this week to urge PetSmart to rethink their policy to reflect a more open admission that is based on temperament and not on breed/looks.

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After all, people look at these two and think “they look the same to me,” but they are as individual as a fingerprint with their own personalities, likes, dislikes and behaviors.  Neither is better or worse than the other, but they are different.  A passive solution would be to boycott PetSmart but to be honest, I don’t shop there very often at all.  I’m there more often to participate in adoption events and there have been only two instances that I have not handled a “bully” at these events.  Would PetSmart notice if I discontinued shopping there?  Nope.  Will I continue to handle dogs at adoption events held at PetSmart?  Yep, however I won’t be spending money there nor am I asking you to boycott, that is a personal choice for everyone to make individually.  I am asking you to voice your concern if you believe that all dogs should be seen as individuals.

Discrimination is discrimination and whether you would take advantage of their day care, or Pet hotel  or not, I urge you to stand against this by posting your pictures to the PetSmart Facebook page with the hastags #SeparateIsNotEqual #WhyCantIPlay #EndBDL #PetSmart

 

Ray’s Rebuttal

So, my little brother thinks he’s sooo smart, eh? Here are some examples of why I disagree. He’s always goofing off when Mama tries to take pictures of our my handsomeness.

Derp Face

Derp Face

And he gets these looks on his face that just seem so…simple.

Simpleton

Simpleton

And he has no dignity.

Really?

Really?

But I guess even though he’s silly, he IS my little brother and I love him a lot I guess we might as well keep him.

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20130819_204740Because like Mama says, we are yin and yang.  He puts himself out there and meets people like a good ambassador so that I don’t have to.  I prefer to take my time and hide behind my Mama for a while, so we suit each other just fine.

Yin and Yang

Yin and Yang