Sunshine. Age 9. Lives in West Paterson, New Jersey. Is a keen observer of wildlife and enjoys spending time with her three adopted feline children. Was hit by a car and found living on the street by some nice men who helped her heal. They even took her to work with them! It was there that Sunshine found her new family. Sunshine reports, ”Life is good now, but I could use some more chicken…”
McCready. Age 7. Lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Nickname = Reed. A co-founder of the Bella-Reed Pit Bull Network. Shares his home with a pit bull (Bella Blue) and a conure parrot (Flapper). Loves playing with his sister Bella Blue, as well as his friends Roman and Storm (both pitties) and his cousin Bailey Gwen (a lab). Also loves to kayak and run around in the yard. His favorite down time is sunbathing in the sun patches on the rug. Loves when you sing “You Are My Sunshine” to him. McCready is a certified service dog. Was rescued in 2005.
Mojo. Age 11. Lives in New Jersey. Nickname = “Mojo Jojo.” Likes snuggling, hiking, swimming, and cat-napping (literally). Lives with his Mom (who adores him!), one other dog, and two cats. Has been a fabulous buddy for many, many foster dogs and cats. Certified as a “Damn Fine Dog.” Mojo Jojo was my first foster puppy and I’m so glad I didn’t let this one go. His heart is BIG. This dog has never met a stranger, never had a bad day, never looked at the glass as half empty. If we all had his daily enthusiasm and joy for life, what a world this would be.
Kilo. Age 12. Lives in Staten Island, New York. Saved his owner’s life in April 2012 when an armed burgler, disguised as a FedEx delivery man, tried to enter the house to rob him. As reported in the New York Daily Post, “My dog stuck his head out the door, and that’s when he shot him.” His girlfriend was sure Kilo would not survive, and she told him, “Hold him in your arms. Let him die in your arms.” But Kilo’s owner said, “I’m not going to let him die.” He rushed Kilo to the South Shore Animal Hospital, where an xray showed the bullet entered Kilo’s head but never penetrated his skull. “This is like one in a million,” said Dr. Greg Panarello, who operated on Kilo. “He’s very lucky.” Kilo is now home with his owner. The hospital’s staff was so impressed, they put an “S” on his bandage for “Superhero.” Dr. Panarello said, “He’s a really sweet dog.” Kilo is back at home recovering with his owner.
Corina. Age 10. Lives in Boston, Massachusetts. Shares her home with her rescue doodle sister (Pike) and 2 guinea pigs. She was adopted from the Worcester Animal Rescue League. Corina was a 30th birthday present to myself in August of 2011. Like Corina, Pike had also just turned 10 in July of 2011! It was fate, they were given the same birthday and now Corina, is the light of my life. She has been the most perfect addition to our family and I could never ask for a more loving, empathetic, sweet natured dog. Corina is very arthritic and her mobility, while still decent, is decreasing daily. However, she smiles all day, everyday, even on the tough days. The amount of joy she has brought to my life in the 8 months that I have had her is immeasurable. My goal was to have Corina become a certified therapy dog but she had other plans. While she passed the Canine Good Citizen test with hardly any training (just some basic obedience) she wasn’t interested in becoming a therapy dog - although I am therapized daily by her presence :) Her idea of therapy is kissing the children in the neighborhood, the guinea pigs, her human friends and family, the couch, the carpet…yup, she loves to lick! She’s super at cleaning the dishes off before they go into the dishwasher and she looks forward to her daily massages (who wouldn’t??). Corina loves visiting her Nana and Papa because Nana always lets her sleep in bed with her. I owe a big thank you to Sarge, because he opened my eyes to the beauty of the Elderbull and brought Corina into my life.
Boss. Age 12. Lives in Atlanta, Georgia. Likes chasing bubbles and chewing up traffic cones. Boss was adopted from California in 2002. I went out there to visit some friends who had rescued him. He was a little too much for their tiny home with 6 other dogs, 15 rescued cats, and various assorted other rescue critters. Boss now lives in Atlanta with two other Elderbulls (Lady Red and Lenox) and various foster dogs. Boss was featured in the 2011 blockbuster, “ELDERBULLS: The Movie.”
Bookei. Age 12. Lives in Hillsborough, New Jersey. Nicknames = Booker, The Bookster, and Bubba. Likes to sleep and roll in the grass. He loves to snuggle with his girl. He likes to try and speak human, like saying “I love you!” He is certified by our family as the Best Dog Ever. We had just lost our dogs to old age. Our daughter was two and missing her dog and there was a huge void in the house that needed to be filled. I kept looking online at dogs and had no idea what kind of dog I wanted to get, I just knew we were going to adopt. A local shelter had a few different breeds of dogs that had just gone to foster homes and the woman who was fostering offered to bring two of them to our home. Since we had a cat, I wanted to see who would be ok with her. As the woman pulled in our driveway, she stopped the car and this adorable greyish brown dog jumped out the back window walked up to our front porch and laid down. So I said, “I think this is the dog for us!” From day one Bookei had a bond with our daughter that is still strong today, 10 years later. He has lived with a cat (no longer with us, she passed on at age 16) and now his pesky 4-year-old Pug/Boston mix brother Elvis, who was also adopted. Most people ask how Bookei got his name. Our daughter was two at the time and had just discovered a great love for books. She told me, “He said his name is Bookie” — how could I argue with that!!?? When we got him he was never a “Pit Bull,” he was a dog who became our dog and we loved him and he loved us.
Shania. Age 12. Lives in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Nicknames = Poops McGavin, Pooper Troops, Niah, and Shizzy. Has also lived in Arkansas and New Mexico. Likes playing dress up, sun bathing, mani-pedis, rolling in stinky things, going for walks, fetching sticks in the water, sleeping with 3 year old Savannah, wrestling with her BDF (best doggy friend) Memphis, car rides, sleeping in, and being with her family. Shania is growing old gracefully with a family that includes: two adults, one 3-year-old girl; two other Elderbulls (UNO and Memphis), an elderheeler (Bella), a ninja cat (Sushi), and 10 backyard laying hens of whom Shania has been known to share a snack with. The family is expecting a second baby due on Shania’s 13th birthday in June. Shania’s mom writes: “If there has ever been an animal that has changed my life and the way I use to view the world according to stereotypes, it’s Shania. Abandoned at an animal clinic I worked at when she was about 5 months old, no one would take her home because they were afraid of her breed. For a month and a half she lived in the kennel area of the clinic until Christmas Eve of 1999, I took her home to spend Christmas with her. The greatest gift I received that year was my parents agreeing that this was the dog for our family and allowing her to stay. I didn’t know anything about pit bulls but I committed to learning what I could about them so I could prove popular opinion wrong. I’ve never gotten it all right with Shania but we have been right for each other from the beginning. Her presence has encouraged me, helped me get over heart breaks, patiently waited as I finished college, stood with me on my wedding day, and now shares her wise old dog heart with a 3-year-old little girl. I tell her all the time that she has to live forever because I don’t know who I will be without her. In a way, she’s my soul-mate. In the words of Willie Nelson, she’s my angel that flew too close to the ground. She’s the epitomy of aging gracefully: always enjoying today and never wishing for more tomorrow.”
Gia. Age 9 (ish). Lives in Pittsburgh, PA. Likes = love and hugs. Hates = dog fighters. On August 4th 2011, a suspected dog fighting operation in Pamlico County, North Carolina was raided (the property owner has since pled guilty to charges). Among the dogs seized from the operation was 9-year-old Gia. She was severely emaciated and nursing what was thought to be her sixth litter of puppies. Her teeth were nearly non-existent and had either been intentionally filed down to the gum line or worn down by excessive chain chewing. The Humane Society of the United States aided by Hello Bully volunteers were her saviors and relocated her and several other dogs to a temporary shelter where their chance at a new life would begin. On September 10, 2011, Gia’s road trip from North Carolina to Pittsburgh began and in the early morning hours of September 11th I finally got to meet the Elderbull that was going to spend her golden years on my couch. She was underweight, dirty, tired, severely anemic and fighting a blood parasite, but she was perfect. Her tail was wagging the moment I saw and has not stopped since. Today, Gia is doing remarkable well and all of her medical issues are essentially resolved. She has reached her ideal weight and manages just fine without teeth. She gets along well with her two brothers (an almost 10 year old pit bull and a 10 year old Doberman) and has started taking classes to become a certified therapy dog. Despite being heavily scarred physically, she has truly proven to be a “lover not a fighter.”
Titan. Age 9. Lives in Gainesville, FL. Housemates with 5 kitties, an Elderbull sister Akasha (age 9), pit bull brother Cal-el (age 3), pit bull sister Teila (age 4), and pit bull foster sister Steel Magnolia (age 1). Titan was adopted 8 years ago from Gainesville Pet Rescue. He used to be super shy around other dogs and strangers, but since taking up agility 3 years ago, he has become much more secure in his dogginess. He’s a great big brother and awesome role model for the fosters that come through. We still do agility on the weekends for fun. Even though he doesn’t compete, he loves the attention and endless treat pouch. Titan loves having his ears cleaned by a kitty. He is currently working on receiving his Canine Good Citizen certificate because he’s just that awesome!