Pit bull advocate competes in “Survivor” charity event

Pit bull advocate competes in “Survivor” charity event

Hosted by the Rogers Lions Club, Live To Give is an annual charity event inspired by the hit reality TV show, “Survivor.” Competitors are asked to raise money to participate, the first $400 collected is prize pool money, the rest is donated to their charity of choice. Last year the Live to Give competition raised over $27,000 for the competitors charities!

We were contacted by Jesse Longtin who is competing in the event and chose to support Save-a-Bull Rescue. He plays softball with one of our foster volunteers and has met many of our dogs at the ball field. He got to interact with these dogs and fell in love with the breed.

“I chose to represent Save-a-Bull Rescues for this charity event because I have always supported charities and organizations that look out for our furry friends and that help them find great and accommodating homes. My first job was at an animal shelter up north and that is where I fell in love with helping animals directly, and where I learned how many people have misconceptions about certain breeds of dogs. While I have never owned a pitbull, I have worked with, and  have lived with pitbulls owned by my roommates and have only found them to be loving, affectionate, and good-hearted loyal companions. I wanted to focus on giving back to a charity that means something to me this year, and Save-a-Bull Rescues fits that criteria perfectly! It’s a worthy cause that I couldn’t be more supportive of and I have seen firsthand some of the amazing things Save-a-Bull has done for the bully breed in the Twin Cities area. My softball coach, Manuel Solano, has brought his Save-a-Bull foster puppies to games and it has been an absolute joy interacting with them and getting them socialized. I couldn’t be more happy to be representing an amazing charity, while getting the chance to play a mini version of Survivor, which happens to be my favorite show of all time!”

We’re excited to cheer Jesse on as he competes in this event and are honored that he chose Save-a-Bull as his benefiting charity. We’re also really excited that our mission and efforts are spreading through the community in small, but powerful ways as our network of pit bull advocates keeps growing!

If you’d like to follow along this fun competition, visit the Live to Give Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/livetogivemn/ https://www.facebook.com/livetogivemn/

And if you want to donate to Jesse’s efforts in supporting Save-a-Bull Rescue, and to learn more about competition details, go here:

https://www.payit2.com/e/livetogive

(Note: Enter the amount you want to donate first, then your name and email on the next page, and then enter “Jesse Longtin” when asked which competitor you want you donation to go to)

We’ll keep you posted on Jesse’s outcome after this event takes place July 26-28, 2019.

Update on Kota

Update on Kota

Adopted: December 12, 2017

Dog’s former name: Kota

What are the best things about your dog?
Her personality; she is so laid back and chill.

Tell us about your dogs favorite activities, sports or training:
Playing with her brother Teddy. They made fast friends and love wrestling with each other. She loves chewing on her bone and her kong.

Do you have any extraordinary adventures or accomplishments?
She graduated from level 1 obiendence training and knows a few simple commands.

How do people react to your “pit bull”?
Most people are timid around pitbulls but then once they see she is harmless and a good doggie they compliment how beautiful she is.

Does your dog have any nicknames?
Dobbie

FAST FIVE with Kota

  1. Food: Piggy or picky? Piggy, not picky at all
  2. Dog beds: Sleep on or unstuff? She snores and sleep in whoever’s bed she can
  3. Travel: Car rides or car sick? Car rides
  4. Water: No way or splash all day? Splash away
  5. Seasons: A day in the sun or a day in the snow? She loves the snow but loves the sun as well, just not for long periods.

Submitted by Tanya S.

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Did you adopt a Save-a-Bull dog? Click here to share an update with us!

Meet Aspen

Meet Aspen

Aspen is a four-year-old pitbull/boxer mix adopted from Ark Animal Shelter in Hastings, MN

Aspen’s favorite things include his Nylabone, his people, his cats: Ruby, Sophie and Chloe and the swimming pool. He even has his own life vest for the boat!

Owners Laurie & Brent say that Aspen loves to be outside when it is sunny and warm. “There is a hill in the back of the yard that he will lie on top of. He will roll on his back and fall asleep with his legs sticking in the air,” they said. “One time, the neighbor (saw him sleeping like that and) thought Aspen had died!”

Photos by Tangerine House of Design.

Spayed in the Nick of Time

Spayed in the Nick of Time

Our spay/neuter clinic on August 8 was booked solid. At 7:30am there was a crowd of people outside waiting for the doors to open and to be checked in for their appointments. When Ashley B. left  her dog Luna with us it wasn’t until the pre-surgery exam that the vet staff noticed Luna was lactating. While it didn’t look like Luna was recently pregnant, the doctor decided it was unsafe for Luna to proceed with surgery that day.

We called Ashley to let her know Luna needed to be picked up and rescheduled for another day. Ashley was very upset because she was in the process of moving and her housing placement was contingent on Luna being altered.  Without this surgery, Ashley and Luna were in danger of losing the roof over their heads.

Although Luna missed our free Fix Your Pit clinic in August, we promised Ashley that as soon as Luna was ready, we’d cover the surgery cost at another AHS clinic date. In addition, Save-a-Bull director Lori Hames worked with Ashley’s housing counselor to assure them that Ashley was in fact a responsible owner and was meeting the requirements and having Luna spayed.

Luna got her surgery and they got to keep their housing. Luna is a very happy, healthy, and spoiled girl in her new home.

Your donations on Give to the Max Day help us fund the Fix Your Pit program and allow us to be there for those who need help. Healthy dogs create healthy, happy communities where responsible owners have the chance to change the stigma that surrounds pit bulls and ultimately improve their future as a breed. Thank you for your support!

Beyond the Clinic: Community Outreach

Beyond the Clinic: Community Outreach

One of the things we have learned from our spay/neuter clinics is that there are many good people out there who love their dogs and simply don’t know how and can’t afford to give them the care that they really need. The low-income and homeless communities really don’t have any resources for their animals, and unwanted litters and serious health conditions are hurting the pets in those communities. This is one of the ways our spay/neuter clinics have grown to include a Community Outreach Program. While its a small program, it helps those who don’t even have the means to come to a clinic or who need services that aren’t necessarily provided by the human organizations that help them.

SAVE-A-BULL RESCUE’S COMMUNITY OUTREACH PROGRAM

Save-a-Bull’s Community Outreach Program aids bullies and their owners who are in need through providing resources and assistance for vetting, food, winter dog clothing and basics such as leashes and collars. The main goal of this program is to keep dogs with their people; to empower the people to get what they need so that they can take care of and keep their pets. We do not want to take their dogs away from them and we do not report to local animal authorities unless the situation is truly needing it.

The people this program benefits are often clients of our spay/neuter clinics who need help with follow up care or with more complex medical issues that were discovered during the routine spay or neuter. Rather than turn these people away because the issue is outside of the scope of the clinic, we find a way to make sure they get the care, medication and attention they need to see their dogs through these issues.

Another way the Community Outreach Program helps beyond our clinics is out on the street. Save-a-Bull Vetting Manager Ian is a nurse/outreach case manager who works for an organization that provides assistance and street level outreach for folks that are long term homeless with addiction and/or mental health. Street level means that he goes directly to their camps and into the woods to find the people in need. Often times these people have dogs and the human organization doesn’t provide any assistance for those dogs, so Save-a-Bull can help make sure they have the basic supplies – food, bedding, warm coats, vaccinations and medication and vet care if needed.

MEET CHINA

China and her owner lived on the streets together for 12 years. She had been with him since she was eight weeks old and when it was discovered she had untreatable cancer, her owner was devastated. When the time came to let China go, the homeless owner’s only option was to drop her off at a shelter to be euthanized. He refused, it was important to him to be with her in her time of passing. Our Community Outreach Program made this final farewell a possibility. By providing a vet appointment at a clinic he was able to hold China while she left this world and grew her wings.

Because Ian is out and about all day he runs into people with dogs who need help on a regular basis. The stigma of a pit bull living on the street might be too much for some people, but Ian says “I run towards the pit bulls instead of away from them when doing outreach.” (Learn more about Ian’s work here.)

While our program is small, and there is no formal application process to get help, we do our best to keep our ears and eyes open and offer help where needed. Our volunteers actively hand out clinic flyers to the owners of dogs in need of spay or neuter and alert our vetting team of homeless people that may need assistance. Your donations on Give to the Max Day will help support the resources this program and our clinics have to offer our community, thank you.


Supporting spay and neuter and community assistance programs will promote responsible dog ownership and breed advocacy which is an important part of the work we’re trying to do every day. 

 

Responsible Ownership Isn’t Always Easy

Responsible Ownership Isn’t Always Easy

by Autumn Brennan

“I raise my voice not so that I can shout,
but so that those without a voice can be heard”

― Malala Yousafzai

In 1993, I rescued my first pitbull in Milwaukee, WI. Maude was a bait dog I scooped up from a crack house. She was covered in deep puncture wounds from bite marks; she more bloody scabs than silky brindle fur.

I fell in love.

I knew that protecting this beautiful breed from violence was important work. Even with my meager retail wages, I needed to provide impeccable care for Maude, not only for the short term surface comforts – but for her long term health. I worked with a local vet to ensure my girl would not contribute to overpopulation or feed into the bad reputation associated with the breed. Maude was spayed, rehabilitated, and her spirit planted the seed of unconditional love in my heart for this painfully misinterpreted breed.

Fast forward 25 years, dozens of fosters and adoptions later, I can honestly say that my children were raised by pitbulls. Standing by my side during home births, fetching diapers and toys for my toddlers, and being the best nanny any Mama could ever wish for – these dogs were made for loving service.

My home became a well-known drop off place for wayward pups in need of love.

In 2017, I made a promise to my children that we would be done with fostering due to my demanding corporate job and travel schedule. I shared my intention with the organizations and kind people that knew my soft heart.

I remember commanding a close friend “If I say YES, to a rescue pup, please remind me of this promise!”

And then my close friend told me about a house of hoarding horrors and a pile of puppies that were struggling to survive. There was one left that no one wanted – a runt approximately 1/3 the size of her siblings. I immediately said “NO”, until she was brought to me, covered in scabs, burn marks, and bloated with the worst case of worms I have ever seen.

I thought I could just rock a quick rehab while my kids were camping with friends. Instead I received the following message: “OMG MOM!, We have only been gone for 2 hours and you rescued another dog!!! Please send pics ☺”

When you are on the edge of your possibility, you are oftentimes granted another opportunity that may feel like a burden at first. When I held this swollen, stinky, starving mess of a pup I sensed her beautiful spirit and desire to be a part of a greater love.

“FINE!”

Our pack of rescue pups adored this new wiggle butt and she eventually blossomed into a graceful and sassy velvet hippo.

I named her Malala Grace, after Malala Yousafzai – the youngest Nobel Prize winner who stood up for the rights of girls to receive education in Pakistan. She held her ground in the face of violence and oppression, turning tragedy into triumph.

Malala inspired me because her comeback game was strong as hell. She moved my family and softened the hearts of even the crabbiest of crabby teenagers. She stood for something much greater than a worm infested hoarding house reject. She held her ground, created harmony, and found joy in every moment. She demanded respect and constant snuggling.

And then it happened, in March of 2018 I was without a fancy schmancy corporate job, and still had an intact female to contend with. We needed to move out of our home and relocate. Resources were beyond tight and I did everything in my power to manifest the basics. During our move, Malala went into heat. I felt like the worst dog Mom because Malala had not yet been spayed. When I had the money, I didn’t have the time. Now I had the time, but no money!

I researched rescue organizations within the greater Minneapolis area and “friended” them all on Facebook – just to build a sense of community in the area. I soon learned that Save-a-Bull had a program called “Fix Your Pit” which offered free spay and neutering for bully breed dogs. I met the passionate Save-a-Bull team at a “Pints for Pitbulls” Brewery Tour event and brought Malala’s rescue brother Nandi – a sweet English Bully/Pitbull mix who is hearing impaired.  I was encouraged by the engaging staff and was reminded of their amazing resources! Soon thereafter, rescue director Lori reached out and we scheduled Malala’s spay.

I was a Nervous Nelly taking my furbaby into the procedure. All of the dogs I had previously adopted/fostered were either already snipped or too young for the procedure. The staff was in love with her sweet quiet nature, patience and yummy smelling ears! When we came to pick her up, all she wanted to do was snuggle. And snuggle we did!

It’s been 2 weeks since the spaying and Malala has recovered beautifully. We romped at the dog park yesterday and she didn’t hold back on her enthusiasm! To see her in her element, jumping over her slow moving brother and grinning ear to perky ear, filled me with the deepest gratitude knowing that she was safe from unwanted pregnancies, rabies, and had a microchip just in case she ever wanted to take herself for a walk!

The gift of the spay procedure at a time when my family was at our lowest means the world to me. As a parent you want to ensure your children are cared for body, mind, and spirit. Even though Malala is much furrier than the rest of my brood, her heart is still woven with mine. From the bottom of my heart and all of the pitbulls I have been blessed to know and love – thank you!

Giving a voice to the voiceless is why we do this work. It’s why we buy way too many paper towels and store leashes, collars and poop bags in the glove compartments of our cars. We are here to assist the helpless, voiceless and misunderstood. The mission, vision, and function of Save-a-Bull Rescue has served my family with the comfort of knowing that Malala’s health and wellness is in good hands and we are a part of a beautiful community.

Your donations on Give to the Max Day help us fund the Fix Your Pit program and allow us to be there for those who need help. Healthy dogs create healthy, happy communities where responsible owners have the chance to change the stigma that surrounds pit bulls and ultimately improve their future as a breed. Thank you for your support!