Friday, August 14, 2009

What About Our Local Dogs?

With all the bust dog stuff in the air recently and the heavy push to find foster homes for the dogs currently being housed in Missouri, we've been asked a time or two "Why? Why are you going to go all the way to Missouri for dogs when there are so many in your home state that need you?"

Honestly, we fight ourselves with this very thought. But, there IS a reason we are still pushing to help with these dogs. It has nothing to do with money (yeah people think that these dogs will come with some cash HAH!). It has nothing to do with
glory. It does have EVERYTHING to do with making a change in our local area.

Did you know that back in June, 20+ dogs were seized from a property in Union, SC? Did you know that we tried to help? Did you know that not one of those dogs made it out alive? Once a pit bull enters the shelter there, they don't have a chance.

On August 9, 2009, seven people were arrested and 6 dogs were seized in a Sumter County, SC dog fighting bust. Of those 6, one died because of his injuries. Sumter has been trying to place restrictions on pit bulls and pit bull type dogs for several years now. Do these dogs have a chance either? A quote from the article linked above:

"...because of the brutal way the dogs were raised the only thing that can be done to make sure they are not a danger is to put them to sleep.

"These won't have a chance to be adopted out," said Dailey."

The southern states are full of these types of busts, but many of them don't make the news. Hundreds of dogs without a chance because they are pit bulls and victims of cruelty. These busts are more than just "dog fight busts." They are cruelty cases. But sadly for many, the "dog fight bust" term holds people back from helping. It introduces negative connotations about these dogs and their temperament. We need to change that.

By stepping out of our immediate area to help with a larger case such as the Missouri-based dog fighting raid, we are introducing new resources to our own area. Dogs from these "fight busts" are not much different than dogs pulled from area shelters. In speaking with other organizations who have helped these dogs, they actually suggest that they are no harder to work with because of their exceptional desire to please their people.

We want to change the negative perception surrounding these dogs. We want to help the public understand just how amazing they are. We want the public to see even MORE dogs come out of these situations earning and wearing their badges of merit by receiving their Canine Good Citizen certification, becoming a therapy dogs, and even simply becoming cherished family pets that can present themselves as breed ambassadors.

We hope by taking a few dogs from MO or another "fight bust" and showing the individuals in our area, in the southern states that these dogs CAN and DO make great companions, regardless of their past will be enough to save SO many more here, that may not have had the opportunity before. It's about changing perception and moving away from the common stereotypes.

The Missouri dogs, if released from the courts, will need to have rescue ready for them. If you can open your home to a dog in need, please fill out our Foster Application. We need people to commit NOW because we will only have one opportunity to save these dogs.


Our Pack said...

Nice blog and so true. These dogs are really no different than dogs we work with all the time.
Well said.
Thanks for all that you guys do!!

Dee Broton said...

I think it is great that you are willing (when not too many people/rescues are) to help these dogs. Many ex-fighting dogs make wonderful companions and some even get along with other dogs. Thanks for all you do! The dogs are lucky to have you. Keep up the great work!