We “Heart” Our Fosters

We “Heart” Our Fosters

Foster families. They are the center, the heart, of rescue. We can’t do anything without their caring, commitment and undying support. No dog can come into rescue if we don’t have a place to keep them, and our foster families open up their doors again and again to make sure we can keep saying “yes!’ to dogs who need us.

And fostering is incredibly rewarding to the people who care for, and grow to love, the dogs that pass through rescue. In honor of Valentine’s Day, we asked fosters “What makes your foster dog love-a-bull?” and they told us what they love about the dog they currently have in their home. You’ve seen these posted on Facebook all month, but here they are again, all in one place, for a powerful look at why fostering is so important both to rescue, and to the families who take dogs in as their own.


We 💖 Jeff & Alexa



What makes Remi love-a-bull?

When we get home, she’s so excited, that she’ll even help you untie your shoes! She gets really excited for treats that her tail will go so fast and she can’t contain how happy she is.

Her floppy ears have a mind of their own. Depending on her mood, they’ll drastically change how they are positioned.

Remi is the perfect size, petite but muscular and she is beyond beautiful!


We 💖 Kristina (& Stewart)

What makes Stella love-a-bull?

Stella is the ultimate super sweet and cuddly pup. She always wants to be around us, she’ll get up from any nap just to follow us to the next room.
She loves snuggling up next to her foster brother or her humans in the middle of the night.

She loves attention and being touched. She expects constant belly rubs if you’re nearby or she’ll put her head under your hand so you can pet her.
She is a professional fetch player. She will find a ball or toy, drop it off for you and bring it back every single time. She won’t stop until you do.

She prefers to lay on top of us, not next to us.

She vocally tells us how she feels. When she needs to go outside she barks really softly and runs to the back door and she shows her excitement for walks and food with loud whimpering.

When you ask her if she’s ready for bed, she gets up from whatever she’s doing and walks to the bedroom and waits for someone to help her onto the bed or open the kennel door for her.

She gets herself comfortable in her kennel as soon as she sees us putting our coats on to leave. No need to ask her, she is just such a good girl!


We 💖 Jill & Ciara

What makes Syrtia so love-a-bull?

Her gray muzzle and beauty marks, which give her character, make her look more distinguished and wise, and command respect.

The way she grunts as she makes a nest in her blankets.

She loves to cuddle and will cuddle with the cats, the dogs as well as her humans.

Being greeted at the door with a wiggly butt and ball in her mouth.

Her gentle demeanor, and big pittie smile.

The way she uses her big pittie head to gently push up against you and tell you she wants some love and pets.

Her high fives, paw shakes, and other moves she uses to impress you in order to get some treats.

The way her butt wiggles and her eyes light up when she plays ball and will bring her ball back to you to throw again and again.

She’s an easygoing dog and is already potty trained, knows basic obedience commands and walks great on a leash.

She loves to ride in the car and is a great car rider.

She loves everyone and gives great kisses.

Despite her age, she still has lots of energy and lots of love to give.

Overall, she is just the best elderbull in the whole world!


We 💖 Tammy & Jillian

What makes Beaux love-a-bull?

Beaux has the sweetest face that you just can’t help falling in love with.

We also love that Beaux is an amazing cuddler!

Everyday when we get home, Beaux is ready and waiting to greet us with the best wiggle dance you have ever seen!

Even though he came to rescue with some leg issues, he doesn’t let that get in his way! Beaux is just a happy-go-lucky puppy.

We LOVE his kisses!

Beaux has the happiest personality that can brighten any mood. You just can’t help but smile when you are around this little guy!


We 💖 Ricardo

What makes Peetie love-a-bull?

Peetie is a complete and total ham. He has a very playful personality and a huge handsome smile. He’s intensely curious about the world and will keep you company while you work around the house.

He’s an energetic dog who loves to play fetch, go on runs or long walks and wrestle with his rope toy, but he is equally lazy and snuggly at home. His new favorite thing is to lie for hours on the recliner and watch very quietly from the window as people and cars go by. When he’s not in the recliner, Peetie likes to snuggle with resident dog, Sheba, too.

His affection is universal!

Peetie has been with us since August and his transformation has been incredible. He’s become quite comfortable and relaxed in a home setting with consistently-enforced boundaries and expectations. He used to be very insecure, following me from room to room and crying if he wasn’t in the same room. Now, he’ll take long naps in the living room while you roam about the house, and he’ll enter and stay in his crate quietly when you leave for work or extended periods.


We 💖 Cassie

What makes Jezebel love-a-bull?

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways:
The first thing you want when I get home is a scratch.
You are “outspoken” and spunky.
When I get up in the morning you don’t let me, you lick my face and snuggle in for an extra five minutes before you will let me get out of bed.
You play so well with the kitty cat.
Every dog you meet in a normal environment you get along with.
You love little kids.
You are always a work in progress like me.
You love love love food.
I didn’t have to teach you to fetch you just knew.
You love to be outside.
You are a Class A snuggler.
You love to jump in the bathtub.
You will be so hard to let go when you find your forever family!


We 💖 Lori (& Peter)

What makes Perdy love-a-bull?

Perdy is “love-a-bull” because she was the underdog. The one who found herself pregnant in a shelter with a euthanize date.

We brought Perdy into our home and she fit in perfect with all of our dogs immediately. We have a very diverse pack including a dominant female queen of the house. Even our queen bee shared with and befriended the beautiful Perdy.

She is a loving family pet who almost didn’t get the chance to shine.

Since having her babies, Perdy has gone from being a wonderful momma dog back to the joys of being a happy-go-lucky dog. She loves to play with her toys, run with the dogs and just be the sweet love-a-ble girl she is.

Perdy is the perfect Valentine’s sweetheart!


We 💖 the Farrelly Family

What makes Hallie love-a-bull?

Little human Maddie:
She is so big and snuggly, I love my buffalo!

Little human Leighton:
Eye, ear, nose. (We think she’s beautiful too, Leighton!)

Foster Mom, Nicole:
I love how much she loves Leighton and Maddie. She gets very excited to wake them up each morning. There are times that she is impatient and will bop Maddie’s bedroom door open with her huge melon because I am not moving quick enough for her.

I love when she gets excited about something and flips on her back squirming on the floor with an upside down smile.

I love that she has presence, she sounds like a heard of elephants coming down the hall!

Foster Dad, Desmond:
I love that it doesn’t matter where she is in the house, if I sit down on the couch she is immediately next to me. Then she will proceed to nuzzle behind me, pushing me to the edge of the couch. If I change couches to give her more room, she does it again. She loves to be with her humans.

I love that she will find blankets and burrow in them snorting and rolling around like a boar.

We all love how much Hallie likes to make us happy; she likes to please her people and loves praise.


We 💖 Jolene & Steve

What makes Alex love-a-bull?

Alex loves to argue and stand his ground. You tell him to stop bugging his foster siblings, drop a toy or come to you when he feels he doesn’t need to listen and he will just talk right back to you, similar to your typical teenager. (Trust me, this is hilarious)

Alex is a major cuddler and loves to snuggle up on the couch and watch TV with us.

Boy does Alex love to give kisses. He knows he was saved from the streets of Indiana and shows his appreciation daily.

To think about the condition he arrived in, patchy fur and sickly looking, to healthy young man with a beautiful coat of fur has really made our hearts soar.

When Alex arrived he acted as if he had never experienced the joys of having a toy to play with. The experience of finding Alex a toy he connected with was such a rewarding experience. Now, he loves all toys!

Alex also acted as if he had never heard the word “treat” before. Trust me, this is no longer a hidden mystery to him!


We 💖 Jeanette

Roscoe has been adopted! But what did you love about fostering him?

He wakes me up by crawling over the bed and putting his paws and chin on my face.

He is very smart and loves mastering new tricks and training.

He tries to sneak more food when I’m not looking and has fallen into his food bin more than once.

He has a weird obsession with underwear.. LOL

He soothes himself with mouth nibbles on me or his doggie foster brother, especially when he’s tired and wants to sleep.

He loves meeting new people and is friendly to everyone!

He is quite good at fetch and is starting to be coordinated enough to catch the ball in air.

He snorts when sniffing the ground like Pumba from the Lion King.

He really loves to cuddle and he’s not too big to be a lap dog.


We 💖 Ashley, David & Lane

What makes Tina love-a-bull?

Tina has an amazing smile that brings our family so much joy! She loves to snuggle and every morning greets me with a great snuggle sesh.

She is a very happy dog and has a great head tilt. When she hears noises on TV, she looks around and tilts her head every which way. She has a big ol’ head that is just adorable.

My nephew loves that he can play with her and cuddle her too. He said he loves her great personality.

Overall, we love Tina so much and can’t wait for her forever family to love her too!


We 💖 Danielle

What makes Kelsey love-a-bull?

Kelsey is the most beautiful dog in the world. She has stopped traffic with her gorgeous looks!

She is a low rider, seriously one of the lowest to the ground dogs you can think of!

Kelsey is a major snuggler. She can find you no matter where you are in the house. If you are down for a nap, Kelsey is in!

She snores like no ones business. We are thinking she is probably part pig because of it!

No joke, Kelsey needs negative exercise because she is seriously so lazy.

She is OBSESSED with children of all ages and all people. Kelsey is the definition of a lover.

When she gets random bursts of energy it makes me laugh so hard!

Her one blue eye is to die for!


We 💖 Lorelei

Foster manager Lorelei and the Lion King litter.

Save-a-Bull’s foster manager, Lorelei,  is the glue that holds our foster program together. Not only does she take dogs into her home, she offers coordination, mentorship and support to the dozens of families that currently foster for the organization. If you’ve ever considered fostering a dog, Lorelei would like you to share the following insight with you:

We need you! Why foster?

Flexible, forgiving, family, future.

We all know the high-level reasons why you should become a Save-a-Bull foster home. Fostering keeps pit bulls out of shelters. It also frees up more space in shelters for incoming dogs and minimizes euthanasia rates. You are literally saving a life.

But did you know that fostering increases the chance of a dog getting adopted and prevents the chance of a dog being returned to a shelter environment? While in foster care, dogs learn appropriate socialization skills with humans and other animals. They experience all the things we take for granted (i.e. TV, noises from cooking, car rides, a regular schedule, baths, weather including snow and rain, couch snuggles, post person delivering mail, etc). You help them develop the skills needed to become a perfect companion animal and fit into a perfect forever home.

But, fostering is so much more!

Fostering is flexible.

There are no rules that you have to have a dog in your home at all times. You can foster a couple times a year, all the time, or temp foster on the weekends. You choose what age dog is best for your life style – puppies, adolescents, adults and geriatrics. We have them all, and thanks to our intake/matchmaking team, we can search out and find any kind of dog you may want to foster.

Fostering is forgiving.

You don’t have to be a perfect person, have a giant house or large yard. You can live in an apartment, work full time and go out on weekends. All that truly matters is that you have the ability to give time and love to a dog – that will love you in return. Many of our dogs come with sad stories but the compassion and care you show to your foster will change their lives forever. Pit bulls are all about instant forgiveness. If you mess up by putting the gentle leader on wrong, miss a meal or don’t open the door in time for a potty break, they will forgive you and move on. Lesson learned.

Fostering is about family and fun.

Fostering is a family adventure; everyone engaged in the common purpose of caring for the dog. Children of all ages can participate in family walks, responsibility of feeding times, poop pick up and discovering that through volunteering they can personally make a difference in the world. Entire families are welcome to spend time together at adoption events and Save-a-Bull gatherings.

When you become a foster with Save-a-Bull you join our family. Fosters, mentors, volunteers and leadership all join together in the mission of rescuing pit bulls from homelessness, neglect, injury and abuse. While rescue can sometimes be hard work, the Save-a-Bull community often comes together to celebrate each other and our pups.

Fostering is our future and foundation.

Foster homes are the heartbeat of Save-a-Bull. Without homes we would not be able to save lives and find adopters the perfect family pet. Foster homes also help groom good dogs that go out into the community to act as advocates for the breed. Dogs and volunteers as positive role models help build awareness and support of Save-a-Bull and increase our reach to help the dogs that would be lost without our help.

Fostering is about growing the size of your heart, about the unselfish act of loving and letting go. In the short term you are immediately saving a life. But in the long run you have no idea how fostering can fulfill and change your life until you give it a try!


Join this group of incredibly special people who open their homes and their hearts to a dog that deserves a second chance.

If you would like to help us save even more dogs, apply to foster with Save-a-Bull Rescue. You provide the love, we provide everything else.

Apply to become a foster at: saveabullmn.org/foster

 

Shattuck-St. Mary’s Senior Makes a Big Impact

Shattuck-St. Mary’s Senior Makes a Big Impact

This Christmas holiday, a  senior high school student made a wonderful gift to Save-a-Bull Rescue. Shattuck-St. Mary’s senior Aubrey Stafford conducted her senior leadership project in support of  Save-a-Bull by raising awareness and funds to support the rescue.

In addition to raising funds, Aubrey wanted people to learn that often misunderstood, stereotyped, and targeted for dog fighting, pit bulls are prevalent in local shelters due to irresponsible breeding and ownership. Aubrey, who grew up with a rescue dog and has an interest in becoming a veterinarian someday, believes that pit bulls are particularly misunderstood. “Pit bulls are not an aggressive breed, they are gentle giants,” Stafford said.

As part of this awareness project, Aubrey created a slideshow and presented it to her school, hosted a donations table during lunch periods for a week, and hung posters around the school to help advertise. Her efforts paid off big time as she raised $840.96 for the dogs in rescue.

We can’t thank Aubrey enough for taking it upon herself to go the extra mile for dogs in need. Her attitude and awareness is incredible and shows what kind of positive impact just one person can make. We’re honored and proud of the work she is doing and know the future holds big things for this bright, young star!

Give to the Max Day Results

Give to the Max Day Results

Now that all the dust has settled from our Give to the Max Day whirlwind, we’d like to take one more opportunity to thank each and every person who took the time to donate to our Fix Your Pit campaign. We believe the services we’re funding at these clinics will make an impact in the number of unwanted, neglected and abused pit bulls in our community and we’re thrilled you feel the same way.

Here are some numbers and stats that illustrate the results from our 2016 Give to the Max Day fundraising and how awesome you really are. We thank you again and again, for making our goal a reality!

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Supporters made donations in the name of or in memory of those they care about the most. The messages that came with the donations are as valuable as the dollars themselves. We are beyond touched that the work we do means as much to you as it does to us!

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Volunteers See Beauty in the “Beastliest” Puppies

Volunteers See Beauty in the “Beastliest” Puppies

Meet Gunnar and Sigmund. Both these boys came to rescue as strays, picked up by animal control and who’s owners never came for them. And they both suffered from severe cases of mange. Mange is a condition where mites live in and burrow through the skin of a dog. Severe hair loss, scabbing and infections are painful and if left untreated can compromise the dog’s immune system and even lead to death.

Mange is a difficult issue to treat, but the outcome is generally very good given enough time and diligent TLC. Save-a-Bull volunteers are some of the most dedicated people you’ll ever meet and will never hesitate to take in and help one of these dogs.

So what does it take to treat mange? It takes only two small doses of Bravecto, which is the easy part. It also takes daily medicated baths where the shampoo has to sit on a wet, wiggly puppy for at least 10 minutes. It takes  coconut oil rub-downs every single day to keep the scabs from drying and tearing the skin. And lots and lots of laundry – not only to keep the dogs bedding and area clean, but because these mange dogs smell terrible! Their skins is oozing and pussing as it tries to heal and they feel most comfortable wrapped in a tshirt or coat that needs to be changed multiple times a day.

Who wouldn’t want a mange puppy?!?!

But our volunteers take in and care for these dogs over and over and the result, as they come back to healthy, happy dogs, is amazing – as  these before and after photos will prove.

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This year, we took in Gunnar and Sigmund, as well as Dexter, Newton, Indy, Penelope, Julio, Matilda, Knox and  Leila and watched them all bloom into beautiful bully butterflies who were ready to start the next chapter of their lives without a worry in the world!


Thanks to you, Save-a-Bull has had the opportunity to rescue and rehome a lot of deserving dogs this year. But that’s not enough! Supporting spay and neuter assistance programs for our community will promote responsible dog ownership and breed advocacy which is an important part of the work we’re trying to do every day. Donate today and be a part of our Fix Your Pit program!

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Sticks & Stones May Break Their Bones, But Rescue Will Help Make it Better

Sticks & Stones May Break Their Bones, But Rescue Will Help Make it Better

At Save-a-Bull we really love to try and help dogs with special medical needs. Because of fantastic supporters, we have the money to try and fix or at least address any obstacle that may keep a dog from getting adopted.

Pippa was one of those dogs.  She  found herself at a shelter in Indiana after being picked up as a stray. Our rescue partner in the area sent us a picture and told us she was having trouble walking, but would we be interested in taking her in?  Without knowing any other details, we said “Yes! When can she be here?” Pippa made the long trek to Minnesota on June 4, 2016.  Even though she was in a lot of pain from trying to walk with her bad legs, she was the sweetest dog and just wanted to cuddle in your arms.

When Pippa arrived our first move was a trip to the vet to get a diagnosis. Pippa had a birth defect called Carpal Flexural Deformity which caused her front limbs to fold over themselves and made her walk on her elbows with her chin touching the floor. The worst part was that there was no surgical fix for her condition.  So Pippa began intensive physical therapy both in-home and at a therapy center where she used a water treadmill to try and straighten and strengthen her legs. It was a long shot, but we hoped for the best.

After just a few treatments we were shocked to see the improvement she was making!  She slowly started gaining muscle in her legs and flexibility in her paws and would do small things like holding bones to chew on with her paws and digging in the yard. These were huge strides for Pippa!

We are extremely happy to report that Pippa’s legs now look visibly normal.  She is able to walk and run like any other happy puppy with no restrictions.  After a long day her feet sometimes still turn out, like a ballerina, but she’s no longer in pain. She is sweet, sensitive and smart and we’re so happy to be a part of her journey back to health!

Pippa’s case was a rare case, but we’ve also helped many other dogs with more standard orthopedic issues this year:

  • Chance, Roo and Polly all suffered from leg injuries and required amputation surgeries. These tri-pods didn’t let that slow them down and they’ve all been adopted!
  • Delilah had a similar condition to Pippa but was older and was not able to make the physical therapy strides Pippa did. She will never be fully able to walk on hardwood floors, go for long walks or jump.  But she was adopted by a family that is perfect for her and is happier than ever.
  • Duckie was malnourished and spent a majority of her time in her kennel as a puppy, causing her legs to bow and have what is called “paddle feet.”  With some good nutrition, a little therapy and a lot of love, you can’t even tell!  She’s grown fully into her strong legs and enjoys walks, runs and play dates at the dog park.
  • Ritzy and Opal both had leg fractures that required surgery and pins for correction. Ritzy has been adopted, but Opal is still facing a few other medical issues that we’re happy to address before she can be adopted.
  • Boss had a fracture in his leg after being struck with a  baseball bat.  He was put in a cast and the leg healed perfectly! Boss was also adopted.
  • Stella needed a Tibial Tuberosity Advancement (TTA) to repair cruciate ligament rupture and patella damage. She’s currently recovering and in week three of a 12-week recovery process.
  • Ruby was a stray taken in by animal control. AC officers knew there was something wrong so they called us and we took her in. Ruby needed FHO surgery to repair her hip and is currently undergoing water therapy on her road to recovery.
  • Ginger came to rescue with a broken leg that wasn’t treated properly and had healed incorrectly. She’s currently undergoing physical therapy to strengthen her leg and will be available for adoption soon.

We are continually grateful for our supporters who keep us going and let us say YES to cases like these. These are all wonderful dogs who would not have had a chance to explore their best life without a little help. Thank you – from Pippa, Chance, Roo, Polly, Delilah, Ducky, Ritzy, opal, Boss, Stella, Ruby, Ginger and the countless other dogs who come through rescue each year.

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Thanks to you, Save-a-Bull has had the opportunity to rescue and rehome a lot of deserving dogs this year. But that’s not enough! Supporting spay and neuter assistance programs for our community will promote responsible dog ownership and breed advocacy which is an important part of the work we’re trying to do every day. Donate today and be a part of our Fix Your Pit program!

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Chance, Pippa, Opal and Roo photos by Tangerine House of Design.

Free Spay/Neuter Program Expanding in 2017

Free Spay/Neuter Program Expanding in 2017

Save-a-Bull Rescue is overwhelmingly grateful for the support of our past adopters, our volunteers and our community over the past many years. With your support we’ve rescued and rehomed hundreds of dogs in need – but that’s not enough.

The vast majority of dogs that come into rescue are unwanted or neglected. From large litters of puppies that would have been euthanized just because there was no space for them, to older dogs that no one cared enough about to give basic care and food. While we love nothing more than to take in and help these wonderful dogs, their situations can be avoided by providing education and basic vetting needs to people in our community.

There are hundreds of responsible families that love their pets but simply can’t afford the care they deserve. We want to help our community give their dogs the care they want to provide them, which will lead to a healthier Twin Cities overall.

On Give to the Max Day 2015, we launched our FIX YOUR PIT program and raised enough money to host and fund four free spay/neuter clinics this year.* These clinics allowed qualified pit bull and pit mix owners to spay/neuter their pets free of charge.**

Every clinic we held was at max capacity and we spayed/neutered 81 dogs as of our last clinic on October 22. According to breeding statistics, serving these dogs helped prevent more than 3,000 puppies from being born into a situation where more than one million pit bulls are euthanized in the US every year.

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This year, our goal on Give to the Max Day, Nov. 17, is to raise enough money to expand our program to six clinics in 2017 and be able to include free vaccines and microchips to all dogs participating. We also plan to create educational curriculums that we can take into grade and middle schools to teach children the importance of responsible pet ownership, kindness to animals, dog bite prevention and giving back to their communities through compassion and volunteering.

By helping our community learn about and care for their pets, we’ll continue to create a growing network of responsible owners who will become breed advocates for pit bulls and pit bull mixes. Spayed/neutered dogs are healthier, have better temperaments, don’t wander away from home and of course limit unwanted puppies – all of which is good for them, great for our community and even better for breed perception overall.

Help Support Healthier Communities

donatenowGive to the Max Day is our jumping off point to raise the money needed to fund our clinics each year. We’re committed to the positive impact spay and neuter will make in our community and will continue to grow and add to our Fix Your Pit program. If you would like to contribute to the ongoing success of this program, please donate now! You’ll be helping to make a huge impact on our community and you’ll earn some fun new swag that also helps spread our mission:

 


$25 provides vaccines for one dog at our clinics.

You’ll also get a car window decal that you can sport to promote our free clinics across the Twin Cities all year long. It’s cute and it’ll help make sure that the people who need our clinics know where to find them.

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$50 provides vaccines and a microchip for one dog

Donate $50 and you’ll get the decal and our beautiful 2017 Save-a-Bull calendar! The photos in this calendar, taken by Tangerine House of Design, show off pit bulls in all their beauty and goofiness.

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$75 covers the cost of one spay/neuter surgery

This donation level gets you the decal and a colorful coffee mug that illustrates the wonderful Twin Cities communities that benefit from happy, healthy pit bull ownership.

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$100 covers the whole thing: Spay/neuter, vaccines and a microchip for one dog!

donatenowDonations at this level score you the car decal, calendar and the coffee mug – thank you so very much!

Make sure you join us on Facebook for Give to the Max Day stories, plans for our 2017 clinics and education, and some fun and games all day long!

 


* Thanks to your generosity during Give to the Max Day last year, we raised more than the money needed for our four clinics in 2016. The unused balance has been set aside to be used toward our six clinics in 2017 and to produce the materials for our educational curriculum for children in grade and middle schools.

**A $10 appointment fee is required at time of booking spay/neuter appointments.