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Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Pit Bulls of New Orleans 2012 Calendar

Our 2012 calendar is at the printer now ... Pre-order your copies and they will ship the first week of November!    Alongside our city’s distinctive urban fabric, you’ll find the pit bulls of New Orleans seated on stoops, relaxing on porches, hanging out at local shops, restaurants and bars, and together with some of our favorite graffiti art.  

$18 per copy; $4.95 shipping per order.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Introducing Chandler

Chandler being his usual happy self

Meet Chandler, a young pit-mix who was found a few months ago wandering near a heavily-trafficked intersection in New Orleans.  We were thrilled to discover that he was microchipped, but disappointed to learn that his owner didn’t want him back.  Forewarned about his “severe” separation anxiety, we were up for the challenge and offered him a foster spot in a home with two other dogs.  

And what a gem little Chandler has turned out to be.  We were prepared to tackle the typical behavioral problems that often accompany rescues.  But much to our delight, he came to us house-
trained, was crate-trained within a week, and had no destructive tendencies.  And as for the alleged separation anxiety?  No doubt, Chandler enjoys the company of his people.  But we’ve also discovered how much he loves the company of his foster siblings, who seem to have quelled his fear of being alone.
Chandler and Villere practice their snuggling

It was a match made in heaven with his foster brother, Villere.  Since day one, they’ve been non-stop play buddies, chasing each other around our shotgun house and playing tug to their heart’s content.  But it’s not all rough-housing with these two; they know a thing or two about relaxation and spend most of their down time using each other as pillows.  

But it took a little more time for him to win over his foster sister (former Sula Foundation adoptable), Kiana.  Kiana was dog-intolerant when we adopted her a year and a half ago, but had been making major strides on walks and at home with her brother.  By the time Chandler arrived, she’d learned to tolerate most dogs, but still wasn’t comfortable at close distances.  She had never played with another dog, but we knew that type of positive interaction would go a long way for her.  And Mr. Chandler changed all that.  For the first month or so, he patiently followed her around, keeping as much distance as she needed.   As she became more and more at ease, he got closer and closer, until they were ending their days cuddled up against each other on the sofa.    

And just a couple days ago, she finally let her guard down....  

It was such a major breakthrough for her, and it wouldn’t have been possible without Chandler’s patient persistence, his incredible intuition and ability to gauge her play style.  The next day, Kiana was playing with her brother Villere and they’ve been at it ever since!  We’ve worked on behavior modification with her for a year and a half, and made great progress, but it was Chandler who was able to show her that other dogs can be trusted.  

I’m often commended for “everything I do” for homeless dogs.  Less often are the dogs commended for what they give me and my family in return.  Chandler is one special boy who deserves to bring all the laughter, joy and trust he has brought to my family to a family of his own.  

-Kelly and Chandler