This rescue story came from Troy and Katie, the couple behind Raven + Crow design studio in Brooklyn:
“Katie—my life + business partner—and I just have a tendency to talk everything out to death. We had been discussing getting a dog for years, weighing out the pros + cons: would our cat be down with it; was our apartment big enough; would we want a run-on-the-beach kinda dog or a sit-in-my-lap-and-watch-rom-coms on TBS with me kind of dog—that kinda thing. Then this last New Years Eve, we went to a no-kill shelter in the East Village to see a dog we had heard about via Facebook and were just like ‘yes, him.’ Turns out he was found wandering around the Bronx and had been rescued from Animal Control’s kill list. Next day, we started off 2013 by picking up Owen and, suddenly, we had a gigantic (for us) dog in our lives.
I’m not going to say it’s been all magical rainbow-riding unicorns + sunshine ever since—turns out he wasn’t quite as old as we were told, so he’s going to get even BIGGER, and he wasn’t 100% house-trained when we got him—but he’s our boy and we’d never turn back. He’s gentle and kind and DOES get on fabulously with our cat after all. We can’t wait to run on the beach with him AND watch Pretty Woman next time it’s on TV. He’s the best. And he loves his new collar + leash. Best-dressed dog on the block. Which is saying a lot in our neighborhood.”
Read our interview with Raven + Crow
Three Rivers Greyhounds
Greyhounds are prized racing dogs, but what happens to these dogs when their racing careers end? Organizations around the country are working to bring retired greyhounds into forever homes. We recently had the opportunity to connect with one of these rescue groups, GPA/Three Rivers Greyhounds. Earlier this month Three Rivers Greyhounds hosted their annual fundraiser to benefit the Sara Smiles Fund, used to rehabilitate retired racers and make them available for adoption. Here are some snapshots of the event, where some of our very own rescue leashes were auctioned off. In almost four years of operation, Three Rivers has found homes for 130 greyhounds. Keep up the good work!
Update from Galgo Rescue International Network
Our friend Marylou Hecht of Galgo Rescue International Network (GRIN) has returned from her trip to Murcia, Spain, where she visited two shelters and brought back six dogs to forever homes. She delivered some of our rescue leashes to Ibizan Hound Rescue and Galgos del Sol, who between them shelter over ninety galgo and podenco hounds that have been abandoned after hunting season. Thanks Marylou for sharing these beautiful photos from your trip. We are inspired by your tireless efforts to promote animal adoption here and abroad.
Visit GRIN’s website for more information on how you can help the abandoned galgo and podenco hounds of Spain.
Oh Papa’s Story
This rescue story came from Starlee Kine, writer and radio producer for This American Life:
“When Oh Papa was first listed on Petfinder, he was called Red. It’s funny to think of him having that name, even for only a few days. Every once in awhile I say it to him, to see if he remembers the time before we met. What I’m really hoping for is for him to tell me where he came from. His first year is such a mystery. He was hit by either one or two cars, the accounts vary but it’s too heartbreaking to think of it happening twice and so I always say one. Someone saw him and brought him to the hospital, where the kind doctors patched him all up. I was unsure about getting a dog, but once I got to the hospital, they let Oh Papa out of the cage where he was recuperating to come see me. He was wearing a cone around his neck and his left back leg was shaved. He walked right up, laid his chin in my lap and he was mine. I hear similar stories a lot from other people. How they just had this immediate sense that this dog belonged with them. I feel this so strongly that it seems like even if I hadn’t gone to the hospital that day, Oh Papa would’ve been waiting for me on my doorstep when I got home.
Oh Papa’s name comes from the book The Road, which is about a father and son trying to survive after the world has ended. People seem to think this is a depressing name for a dog but I disagree. The book is about having hope in the face of no hope, and Oh Papa fits that idea, even though he is completely fine and healthy now. Little kids say he looks like a fox. They also like to say his name. They stretch out the Oh for as long as the can, until their parents call them in for dinner, until they go off to college. Adults try to guess what breed he is and I let them, even though I am often confused about why this is a fun game for them. He has managed to find a lot of work, even in this economy. One of his jobs is to go to the dog park and make sure the parameters are secure. Another is to walk down the street with great purpose. I like to imagine what he looked like as a puppy, how wobbly and big his head must have been. I’m fairly convinced that he fell from the sky. Like Superman.”
Update on Bobbi and the Strays
A few months ago we told you about the relief efforts to rebuild the Long Island shelter Bobbi and the Strays after Hurricane Sandy devastated the Northeast coast. We received an update recently from the shelter and the news was good.
“Thanks to very generous donors we were lucky enough to be able to rebuild fairly quickly, ” says the shelter’s event coordinator Diane Beiro. Bobbi and the Strays is still in need of donations to rebuild their office, and you can check out their Amazon wishlist for items that will help them with construction. And as always, they’re in need of volunteers to work with the animals and help out at events. Check out this page if you’re interested in helping out.
Every little bit makes a difference. Do your part to help animals in need.
Photo Lab Pet Photography
Meet Corbin and Willow. They’re the inspiration behind husband and wife photography team Natalia and Bill Martinez’s work at Photo Lab Pet Photography. It was black lab Corbin’s (right) battle with canine cancer that originally inspired the concept for the couple’s pet photography business. Years later Willow (left) entered their lives as a foster dog and has been a member of the family ever since.
Thanks Natalia and Bill for sharing your beautiful story and photos with us!
A New Life for Spain’s Hunting Hounds
Marylou’s hounds Lando and Chico with our orange rescue leash
Last year we told you about GRIN (Galgo Rescue International Network), an organization that promotes awareness of Spain’s abandoned galgo and podenco hounds. We donated leashes again recently to this amazing group and had a chance to hear an update from our friend Marylou Hecht on GRIN’s rescue efforts.
It’s obvious that we have enough animal welfare problems of our own here in the U.S., but it’s important to stay compassionate and aware of international issues. Marylou tells us, “The situation in Spain for these hounds is just unimaginable … If I hadn’t seen it for myself, I never could have believed that it exists to the level it does.” It’s estimated that 100,000 hounds die from exposure, starvation or killing each year. GRIN not only raises awareness of the hounds’ situation in Spain, they also help with adoptions, bringing dozens of dogs to permanent homes each year.
Marylou is traveling to Spain in April to bring back four dogs; we look forward to hearing about her trip when she returns. Visit GRIN’s website to learn more about their work or to adopt a Spanish galgo hound of your own.
We recently donated leashes to Paws in Prison, a special program that places rescue dogs within Arkansas prisons for training and socialization. After six weeks of living with their inmate trainers, the dogs enter the adoption process with CARE (Central Arkansas Rescue Effort), a non-profit group who facilitates rescue and adoption for low-income families. Paws in Prison not only gives rescue dogs a second chance for a good life, it also helps boost prisoner morale. Here are some pictures of our leashes being used during the training process. For more information on the Paws in Prison program, or to donate to their efforts, visit this page.
This picture of Jax the pit bull was sent to us by the folks at Made by Hand, a Brooklyn film project that tells the stories of the handmade movement. Jax was found tied up and left in Prospect Park. He was rescued by Sean Casey Animal Rescue and has been part of the Made by Hand family for almost a year. They can’t imagine their home without him.