Gurney's Inn
January 24, 2007

Shelter Stories

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On the day after Christmas, Queens City Council member Peter F. Vallone Jr. called for a citywide ban on pit bulls, pandering to the worst media publicity and ignoring the wonderful pit bulls I've been writing about in this column. Five have been adopted so far — all successful adoptions I may add.

(I'm still hoping someone will take the time to call R.S.V.P. about my favorites, Kisses and Bugsy. Kisses is the Boxer-pit mix who lived at the end of a chain in a junkyard for the first year of her life and was saved by the Humane Society and the Nassau Police before R.S.V.P. took charge of her future. I see no faults in this dog at all. None. Bugsy is another nice pit who just needs a good owner.)

After Mr. Vallone made his anti-pit headline grabbing statement, a celebrity chef and pit bull lover, Rachel Ray, took a very different stand on her talk show. She held up a copy of the 2007 "Unexpected Pit Bull calendar," which features color photographs of pit bulls doing the unthinkable — cuddling with children. She declared: "I support this."

For more information go to Proceeds from calendar sales go to charity. I thank Julia Szabo from The New York Post for the tip Sunday, Jan. 7. The columnist owns four pits by the way.

Now, let me tell you about our Polar, a young, small neutered male. He's pure white and weighs about 40 pounds. Fetch is his game. Polar trains well and is very smart. A stray, he came in with no skills at all. Have a volunteer show you what Polar can do now. R. S.V.P. can be reached at (631) 728-3524. Unlike Duke, last week's dog, Polar wasn't keen at first about giving up treasures he fetched. Now he returns a ball to your hand. He also gets along with other dogs, which makes him a joy to work with.

Now, some good news. Parto, the black lab, should be in a home by the time you read this column, and Teddy, the senior cocker spaniel with health problems, was adopted by one of our volunteers. We thank Sue for her kindness to Teddy who's had a very hard life. Readers, we need more volunteers to walk dogs and foster parents for dogs who are still waiting. Don't forget them.

Council Member Vallone can be reached at (718) 274-4500. If the breed ban goes into effect, it will mean a death sentence for thousands of sweet pit bulls, the ones I know, write about and love. What a tragedy. You can make a difference. (By the way, Pete, the mascot of Our Gang in The Little Rascals, was a pit bull.)

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