Tag Archives: Pit bulls

Me and my “disposable dog”

Bailey, the day I brought her home from the shelter, January 22, 2011. She was six weeks old.

13WHAM News did a story tonight on what they called “Disposable Dogs,” puppies and dogs that irresponsible backyard breeders keep producing and then bringing to the shelter. Sometimes it’s day old puppies; sometimes it’s the mother dogs who have been bred till they’re no longer useful and then dumped; sometimes it’s adult dogs people bring home and then turn over when they’re bored with them.

Reporter Jane Flasch said in the story that about 1028 pit bulls were euthanized in 2011 at Rochester Animal Services. I volunteered at RAS for a year – an experience I absolutely loved but also one that broke my heart every time I was there. (I only stopped volunteering when I had to get a real job, which lasted a few weeks. Then Scout got sick, Bailey and Bandit had their turn of events, and I wasn’t able to go back. But I digress.)

The report included not just interviews with people like Jenn Fedele, founder of Pitty Love Rescue – the story incorrectly identified Jenn as a breeder; she is most definitely not a breeder – but also photos taken in the tech rooms at RAS of dogs being euthanized.

Seriously, having just had to put my darling Scout to sleep after a battle with cancer, I did not need to see that. But maybe you did, so that you could understand how serious the problem is.

As I watched the story, one thing stood out: had Bailey not come home with me on January 22, 2011, she would have been one of those statistics. Continue reading


It was madness today

It was madness today at the shelter. Total madness. From the moment the doors opened until closing time, it was non-stop telephone, adoptions, questions, and other Saturday activities that keep the place hopping.

I left completely drained, only to come to find some madness of my own.

I left Bailey in the crate, as usual, and per my daughter’s repeated suggestions, covered the crate with a blanket to give the pup that “cozy den” feeling. On top of the crate was a basket that held some towels and other extra things for the crate, some square pieces of wire snap-together shelving that I sometimes have to put together to keep Bailey out of areas of the living room, a pillow, and Bailey’s overnight bag.

This is what I came home to find:

She’d managed to pull the blanket off the crate onto the floor, toppling everything. Then she pulled the blanket into the crate. Then she tipped over her water bowl, pulled the potty pad around and crumbled it up, and then pooped in the crate and on her toys. She even managed to poop on a Nylabone and then somehow kick the bone out of the crate.

Needless to say, she’s not a happy camper in her crate.

For the next couple of hours, all three dogs were wound up to mach speed. There was wrestling and whining and barking. Bailey peed three times in 15 minutes. She pooped in the living room and started to eat it before I could pick it up. She also pooped in Bandit’s crate, which was a new trick even for her.

One of the dogs managed to cut or scrape themselves while outside playing; I found a few drops of blood in the snow. But neither Scout nor Bandit will let me examine their paws and everyone seems to be acting OK, so it might have been the remains of another hawk attack on the birdfeeder, although I didn’t find feathers. Then again, Bailey eats everything so she might have gotten to them first.

Either way, it’s been an exhausting day. Exhausting.

And now … Scout and Bandit are sound asleep together up in the spare room, Bailey is zonked out on the couch, and all is quiet. The tea kettle is boiling and I have a Pop Tart in the toaster oven and Hercule Poirot in the DVD player.

Which dog breeds are more likely to bite & what can you do to prevent a dog bite?

When it comes to dogs, one of the questions I most often hear is “Which breed of dog is most likely to bite?”

On the surface, it would seem like a no-brainer that dogs like Rottweilers, Pit Bulls and other large breed guarding dogs would be at the top of the list.

But are those breeds more likely to bite than, say, a Chihuahua?

The Humane Society of The United States says:

To simply pull numbers of attacks does not give an accurate representation of a breed necessarily. For example, by reviewing a study that states there have been five attacks by golden retrievers in a community and 10 attacks by pit bulls in that same community it would appear that pit bulls are more dangerous. However, if you look at the dog populations in that community and learn that there are 50 golden retrievers present and 500 pit bulls, then the pit bulls are actually the safer breed statistically.

The truth is that any dog is likely to bite when provoked. And while some breeds may be more excitable or temperamental than others, it’s questionable whether we can condemn an entire breed as being more dangerous.

We can, however, get a sense of what might provoke a dog to bite and why some breeds get labeled dangerous.

Continue reading

Pit bull puppies thrown away like garbage & owner charged; lesson to dog owners to include dogs in emergency plans

This week the story broke about two dogs that had been found in the garbage in the city of Rochester. The dogs, a 6-month-old pit bull terrier and a 1-year-old pit bull terrier, were thrown away like garbage.

They were emaciated and in serious distress, and fortunately some neighbors heard the dogs barking inside the cans and called police. Normally, I’d include a photo of the dogs, but the ones of the dogs in the dumpster are so disturbing I just can’t do it. Any local news site has them.

The woman suspected of owning the dogs, Yvette Solomon, turned herself in yesterday and has been charged with animal cruelty; she pled not guilty. From what I gather from news reports, a family member was shot or stabbed at her residence a month or so ago, and she fled to safety. She didn’t return but thought someone else was taking care of the dogs.

The dogs were found in two garbage cans along with utility bills in her name, which is how police found her.

The dogs are at Lollypop Farm. According to the Democrat and Chronicle, the female puppy has gained four pounds since Sunday and is being socialized. The male puppy is having trouble walking because of lost muscle mass due to malnutrition but is making progress. Both are expected to make full recoveries.

I can understand a family fearing for their lives due to violence and fleeing; but this is a lesson for dog owners that when you take on the responsibility for pets you MUST include for their well-being in any emergency plan. If there was a flood or fire or family emergency that required you leave your home for an extended period of time, you need to make sure you include the pets in your escape plans and have back up care available.

The fact that Solomon had to flee isn’t an excuse for leaving the dogs uncared for. Ultimately, she’ll be held reponsible or she’ll hopefully tell police who was supposed to be caring for the dogs and failed in their task so they can be charged.

In the meantime, the dogs are being cared for and Lollypop Farm is taking adoption applications.

So let me ask: do you have a back up plan for your pets if you were suddenly sick or if there was an emergency?

Which dog breed is most likely to bite? You might be surprised at the answer

*** Note that this article was published in June of 2010. ***

On the CBS Early Show, Dr. Debbye Turner Bell talks to Harry Smith about how to prevent and treat dog bites. Click the photo to go to CBSNews.com and watch the video.

Pits bulls, Dobermans, Rottweilers and other big dogs have gotten a bad rap for being aggressive dogs that are more likely than other dogs to bite people. But according to the Humane Society of the United States, the Centers for Disease Control, and the American Veterinary Medical Association, no one dog breed is more likely to bite than others.



Hallelujah! Finally! Official word that should hopefully save the lives of thousands of pit bulls and other breeds deemed “aggressive”.

At one local shelter, for example, pit bulls that are impounded and not reclaimed by their owner are put down. Not put up for adoption, not sent out to another shelter or even given to a local pit bull rescue group.

Now maybe that can stop.

From a story this week at CBSNews.com (the bolding is mine): Continue reading