You don’t have to own a Pit Bull to know that they get a bad rap. Any dog owner could tell you who Michael Vick is, and even if they’re not a fan of Pit Bulls, they wouldn’t agree with the practice of organized dog fighting. Having owned 3 Pit Bulls at one time (my middle child passed away in May 2017, you can read all about that here…warning: you may need a tissue), I know first-hand the negative Pit Bull stereotyping and judgments that are thrown in the faces of Pit Bull parents on a regular basis.
For those who don’t know…imagine walking your dog and seeing some one cross the street in front of traffic just to avoid walking passed you. Imagine being forced into a home you can’t afford or a town you don’t want to live in because they don’t allow your dog to be there. Imagine meeting a fellow dog lover who suddenly wants nothing to do with you because they discovered what breed of dog you have. This is the kind of treatment Pit Bull parents receive regularly. It’s just not fair to them, and it’s not fair to the dogs.
Think about it…it’s one thing to dislike a certain breed for whatever reasons (maybe you just aren’t fond of big dogs, or your need a dog that serves a specific purpose), but for those who are hating on Pit Bulls just because of their past are literally holding a grudge against some one who was forced to do something against their will. These dogs don’t WANT to fight, they’re being forced to. There’s dogs in China that are being forced to wear kid’s clothes and walk upright on their hind legs just for some viral video craze, but no one holds a grudge against them. They feel sorry for them. But because of what the Pitties were forced to do (kill other Pitties), suddenly they’re classified as horrible, vicious dogs.
But, it doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, a significant amount of progress has been made in preventing dog fighting from existing, as well as educating the public on all the good qualities that Pit Bulls have. Take Gigi, for example…she spent her childhood unwillingly participating in the Missouri 500 dog fighting games. The organization was busted in 2009, freeing Gigi, along with over 350 other dogs who were brought into shelters in hopes of finding loving homes. Shortly after, Gigi met her soulmate parents who have since rehabilitated her and certified her as a therapy dog. Despite her brutal past, which is evident by her scarred appearance and one blind eye, she now happily volunteers at Love on a Leash Pet Therapy. Together with her mom, they visit veterans, seniors, and adults with mental disabilities to brighten their days with her wagging tail and infectious smile.
With that said, we have a long way to go before Pit Bulls and their parents are “accepted” in society the way other breeds are…the way they deserve to be. And it’s up to us to do something about it. Trying to convince the public that Pit Bulls are sweet, loving animals will not be easy. They are, in fact, genetically dispositioned to attack and destroy. And they do, in fact, account for the majority of fatal dog bites in the U.S. BUT, I believe we can help minimize the chances of these types of incidences from occurring. With education and responsible pet ownership, we can help Pit Bulls become the dogs they’re meant to be. It’ll be a long journey to get there, but we have to start somewhere. So, to begin, there’s one simple thing you can do to help show the public how wonderfully beautiful these dogs are, inside and out.
What’s that one simple thing? Share pictures of your Pittie. Seriously! Show the world how loving they are by photographing them giving kisses to you and/or your family members. Nothing says “what a sweet pup” like a photo of a dog licking a baby’s face or the two of them getting along like best buds. Praise their skills by sharing pictures of them performing tricks and other talents. These are dogs are eager to please which makes them fast learners. They’re smart! Make a commitment to teach them a new trick every other month, then share it. Get them certified and take them to visit hospitals, veterans, elderly homes, kids with special needs. Take pictures of them interacting with these people that benefit from having them in their lives.
Dozer may be a big Bull, but he’s not a bully. Having almost not survived his first few days of life, he was rescued and now lives happily with and his brother, Sawyer. And they are two peas in a pod. They sleep, play, and eat together. Dozer even lets Sawyer ride on his back like a horse!
Hurley & Titan have a sister with Down Syndrome who they absolutely adore. And it goes without saying that she adores them back. Pit Bulls like Hurley & Titan are the epitome of “family dog,” showing nothing but unconditional love for their family members.
If we all show the world how big our little Pittie’s hearts really are, we’ll continue to make progress towards their acceptance. Pit Bulls deserve to be given a chance. With out help, they can be treated with the same love, respect, and kindness that other breeds receive. Like I said, it’s a long, tough journey ahead, but we’ve got to start somewhere. Every little step we take towards educating ourselves on responsible ownership, and educating the public on our progress helps. So join the cause, learn about the breed, practice safe ownership, strengthen their non-violent skills, help raise awareness, take some pictures of your Pittie and share them! If you’re not the best photographer and you feel you can’t do your dog justice, call or email me. I would LOVE to help you 🙂
Want to help stop negative Pit Bull stereotyping in a bigger way? Donate to your local Pit Bull non-profit. Awareness groups and rescue organizations (like San Diego’s “SD Pittie Parents” and “Passion For Pitties“) are always looking for help. Also, keep an eye out for my special promotion that I’ll be having during National Pit Bull Awareness month (October)!
Photos taken at Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve.
Have you ever walked into a pet supply store and immediately feel like you’re their #1 customer? Like you’ve known the owner for years and they’d do anything to ensure you and your pets are happy, healthy, and treated with care? Unfortunately, many customers don’t get that feeling. Sure, the staff might greet you when you walk in, then oh and awe over your pet who’s happy to be out on an adventure with you. But do they ask you what your specific needs are? Do they actually listen to what you’re saying and give meaningful advice as to how to solve your problem? Do they genuinely care about your pet’s well-being? If not, then you should pay a visit to the lovely folks over at Carlsbad Pet & Feed.
Having purchased what used to be Carlsbad Feed Store in September 2016, owner and pet lover, Karen Moore, sought out to build a pet supply company that is centered around her customers. By listening to customers’ needs, educating them on products, and offering the most fair prices possible, Carlsbad Pet & Feed has grown to be (and continuously strives to maintain their reputation as) your friendly neighborhood store. With the help of her fiancé, Greg, and son, Steven, they’ve got customer satisfaction down to a science (although, I feel it comes naturally to them as well because they’re just really nice people).
The current line-up of products is a compilation of the highest quality food, treats, toys, and other necessities that were purposely sought out because of customer needs. If a customer comes in asking for a specific type of food, you can bet they will do their best to add it their inventory. Or, in the case where you might be looking for something they don’t carry, and they know of something better suited for you, they’ll educate you on why you should make the switch. With products for all kinds of pets, including dogs, cats, birds, rabbits, fish, ducks, guinea pigs, and more, you’re sure to find exactly what you need for your entire furry family (and the wildlife you so happily support).
When you become a customer of Carlsbad Pet & Feed, you won’t need to go anywhere else for your pet needs. They’re always looking for ways to ensure their customers are 100% satisfied, whether it’s adding a specific item to their inventory, matching a price you found elsewhere, or through their loyalty program. If you’re like most pet parents and you find yourself consistently buying the same kind of food, they offer a way for you to score an entire bag for FREE! All you have to do is collect the UPC codes from the bags, and once you have 12, turn them in and receive your free bag. So easy and so awesome!
In celebration of their 1 year anniversary, Carlsbad Pet & Feed is hosting a HUGE Anniversary Sale on September 15, 2017. Customers will be able to take advantage of substantial savings on nearly ALL of their products. Bags of high quality dog food, like Taste of the Wild, Natural Balance, and Honest Kitchen, will be marked down by up to $15! If your dog prefers wet food, you can save $1 off a can or $12 of a case of Merrick in any flavor. Now, that’s something that’ll have your dog licking their chops! All collars, leashes, crates, and shampoos will be 20% off. And, if you buy a bag of Primal freeze-dried dog food, you get a 16oz goat’s milk for FREE!
As if the savings weren’t enough of a reason to visit, there will also be a variety of vendors to chat with and score free samples from. Mastiff food truck will be on site serving up some delicious sausages…mmm, perfect for a September afternoon. They’ll also be having an hourly raffle to win awesome prizes, like gift baskets with hug savings from the vendors, gift certificates to Carlsbad Pet & Feed, and so much more! In order to score a raffle ticket, all you have to do is spend $25 in the store. And for every $25 you spend, you get another ticket. How great is that?! Lastly, to ensure no customer leaves empty-handed, they’re sending you home with a free goodie bag (while supplies last, of course).
If you can’t make it to the anniversary sale, I’m sorry, because you’ll really be missing out. But, I highly recommend popping in to say hello, meet the family, and buy some great stuff for you pets. Once you’ve been to Carlsbad Pet & Feed, you won’t want to shop anywhere else.
Carlsbad, CA 92011
It may be a coincidence, but it often seems like whenever I go to photograph the San Diego Humane Society adoptable pets, they’re all napping! Even with the help of my lovely assistant, Dee, we often find it difficult to get the animals to wake up for us, let alone “model.” We must come right after their lunch is served. Haha! And although I totally understand having a serious case of “food coma,” it can be a bit of a bummer when we decide to move on to the next animal on the list without getting a decent shot, but we’d much rather let them be at peace with whatever they’re doing as opposed to forcing them to take a picture. Luckily, there’s always a handful of animals who are more than willing to take a mugshot for us…maybe they instinctively know it can help them get adopted faster. So, without further ado, here’s this week’s line-up of adoptable furry friends…
Spencer – 235730
Van Halen – 255258
Andrea – 253786
Lancelot – 254058
Puma Thurman – 254511
Katherine – 250643
Carlos – 244189
Little Bea – 248114
Nibbles – 254498
Marble – 253787
Don’t see a pet that would be a perfect match for you? Check out ALL the adoptable pets at the San Diego Humane Society that are currently looking for forever homes at sdhumane.org.
Calling all Pit Bulls and their parents…we want YOU! I’m currently casting Pit Bull models for my next campaign in honor of Pit Bull Awareness month (in October). By participating in this model call, you will help promote my campaign to support two wonderful Pit Bull advocacy groups in San Diego, SD Pittie Parents and Passion For Pitties.
Send inquiries with a photo of your pet to firstname.lastname@example.org by Thursday, 8/31/17.
Must be available to join us for the photo shoot at Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve on Sunday, 9/3/17.
Why submit your dog?
1. The photo shoot is FREE. Yep, it won’t cost you a thing. All you have to do is bring yourself and your dog.
2. Professional photo shoots are pure entertainment for you and your dog. It’s an experience like no other.
3. You won’t leave empty handed – You’ll receive a FREE 5×7 print, as well as a free custom mobile app featuring your dog’s images from the photo shoot. This is a fun and easy way to brag about your pet’s modeling skills on social media. And you’ll be able to purchase prints of any of the images from the session via an online gallery.
4. You’ll be contributing to a greater cause – helping to raise awareness and support for two of San Diego’s biggest Pit Bull advocacy groups, SD Pittie Parents and Passion For Pitties.
What’s the catch?
There’s no catch – the only catch we believe in is the kind a dog does when playing fetch. With that said, there are some requirements:
1. Your dog does NOT need to be a purebred Pit Bull, but should at least have distinguishable Pit Bull traits.
2. You must be willing to be in at least a few of the photos with your dog.
3. Limit 2 dogs per person.
4. You must be available for 1 of the 7 time slots (8am, 9am, 10am, 3pm, 4pm, 5pm, 6pm) on Sunday 9/3/17 for the scheduled photo shoot at Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve.
5. You must submit a photo of your dog to email@example.com by Thursday, 8/31/17.
6. No previous modeling experience required.
Increase your chances of being selected by completing this survey now!
If you’re into essential oils, you probably know all the wonderful benefits they have, and how to use them to reap those benefits. But, did you know that they can also significantly benefit your dog as well?! Using essential oils for dogs can offer a natural, holistic alternative to some of the most common and severe symptoms that dogs get.
In order to get a better understanding of exactly how to use essential oils for dogs, I teamed up with Orange County heath and wellness professional, Dr. Nikki Knight. Together, we determined the Top 10 Ways To Use Essential Oils For Dogs, based on the most common dog problems, such as anxiety, inflammation, fleas, and allergies. And here to help us demonstrate is her fluffy fur baby (and one of my best friends), Chewie!
Dr. Nikki Knight is a family nurse practitioner with an expertise in essential oils. She has dedicated the past 5 years to essential oil research and implements them into her nursing practice as well as her home.
She currently works and lives in Southern California and is a mom to three (2 humans and a pup). Credentials: Nikki Knight, DNP, APRN, FNP.
What Are Essential Oils?
Natural aromatic compounds found in plants.
Extracted by steam distillation or cold-pressing.
Powerful and safe, without side effects.
50-70x more powerful than herbs.
Top 10 Ways To Use Essential Oils for Dogs
Frankincense: Anxiety, Colitis, Inflammation, Infections, Insect/Snake Bites, Scarring, Tumors, Warts
Lavender: Abscesses, Anxiety, Allergies, Burns, Conjunctivitis, Inflammation, Tumors, Vertigo, Wound Care
Lemon: Anxiety, Electrolyte Balance, Immune Boost, Infections, Lymph Function, Claw Strength
Oregano: Bronchitis, Colds, Infections, MRSA, Ringworm, Strep, Staph
Peppermint: Asthma, Bronchitis, Diarrhea, Fever, Heatstroke, Inflammation, Muscle Pain, Ulcers
Calming Blend: Anxiety, Burns, Inflammation, Wound Care
Digestive Blend: Allergies, Diarrhea, Digestive parasites, Ulcers, Vomiting
Protective Blend: Abscesses, Colds, Flu, Immune Support, MRSA, Oral health, parasites, Spider Bites
Respiratory Blend: Asthma, Allergies, Colds, Heatstroke, Kennel Cough
Flea Repellent – In a 16oz spray bottle, put 4-6 drops of Rosemary and 4-6 drops of Cleansing Blend; fill remainder of bottle with water. Lightly spray dog, avoiding the eyes. Reapply as needed for flea prevention.
How To Apply Essentials Oils To Your Dog
Aromatic – dilute in an oil diffuser for mood management, air purification, and/or opening airways.
Topical – spray or massage on localized areas for immediate comfort and/or immune support.
Internal – Mix with food or dilute in water for digestive support, or problems with the mouth, throat, or liver.
Tips For Using Essential Oils For Dogs
Dogs tolerate oil well, but dogs vary greatly in size. Use tiny amounts of oil for sensitive skin, puppies, and toy breeds. Dilute with coconut oil if needed.
Apply oils between toes and on the pad of the foot when doing foot application.
The oils do not build up in systems like drugs do; reapply as needed.
Avoid contact with eyes, flush with milk if needed.
As an essential oil expert, Dr. Knight recommends doTERRA brand oils. When you choose doTERRA, you are choosing essential oils gently and carefully distilled from plants that have been patiently harvested at the perfect moment by experienced growers from around the world for ideal extract composition and efficacy. Each doTERRA essential oil is also carefully and thoroughly tested using the strict CPTG Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade® quality protocol. Check out their website at doTERRA.com.