Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Watsonville Shots Fair - A family event!

Last summer, the small farming town of Watsonville spent a few scary days talking about breed specific regulations after two dogs ended up in the spotlight for killing neighborhood cats. Thankfully, that talk subsided once cooler minds recognized that loose running dogs had everything to do with irresponsible owners and nothing to do with breed. Whew When the city council decided to reject targeted discrimination, we promised to do what we could to help bring education and resources to pit bull owners in that community. We put them on our list for one of the four Shots Fairs we do each year and looked forward to becoming more familiar with the dogs and the people of this little town.

Last Sunday, we were greeted by nearly a hundred bee-u-ti-ful pit bulls and some very appreciative families in the green fields of Ramsay Park. Many dog owners shook our hands and told us that no one had ever done anything like this for them before. They'd learned about the fair from fliers we left on their door or from neighbors who shared the news around. Some residents showed up early and helped us unload gear from our trucks. One man kept the first arrivers organized for us.

A number of the dogs already had shots (we vaccinated 65 dogs in total) but their owners were eager to stand in the long line and wait for a free microchip (50 chips distributed) and behavior and training advice, much of it offered in their native language. Many were excited to receive vouchers for free spay/neuter surgeries. Some pit bull owners had everything they needed, but they came out anyway just watch and enjoy the scene: Everyone seemed delighted to be part of this important day.

It was clear to all of us that Watsonville has some very well loved dogs. We hope this city continues to embrace and support the kind people who consider pit bulls to be an important part of their family. Below: A family with their pride and joy, a pup named 'Beast.'

Thanks to everyone who said Yes to this event - including our diehard volunteer crew and veterinarian Dr. Sequoia, who were undaunted by the long and twisty drive to get to the dogs in this town. We have two more Shots Fairs to do in 2009 and rely on private donations to make this real. Big thanks to our donors who vote for projects like these with their hard earned dollars. You are the lifeblood of this work! To help with the next two fairs, hit up our PayPal button in the right hand column and make sure to let us know that you'd like to sponsor our Owner Support work. Thank you, Thank you!


who wouda thunk it?? said...

what a stout handsome little boy!! I wish there were more pictures, I love seeing pitties surrounded by loving families

One voice counts said...

OH. What a absoflippinlutely faboo LA speak just can't help myself pic. BEAST. And his humans. You have just made my day. Thank you. Channeling BABE.

Anonymous said...

Hey Donna,

Thanks for letting myself, Lula and Rey be a part of such a great day! We had so much fun. Well organized, and such nice people coming out! Great to see how many people passed us up at the vaccine tables because they only needed a chip. Best of all, I got to smell puppy breath, and lots of it! Nice people, good weather and wonderful dogs.

Thanks again!

Natalie and the rest of the
Southbay Pit Crew

Kirsten said...

oh my, there is a whole lot of *cute* going on there with Beast and family!

I ♥ these community outreach events. (I sooo want to set up at least a modest equivalent in Australia.One day, dream of dreams...) It makes so much sense to move in with an alternative to BSL, etc., rather than just telling councils it's wrong and leaving them with zero ideas...

And I'm always happy to chuck a few bucks at BR when I can. I figure if lots of people give a little, it amounts to a lot. x k

Pam said...

This kind of hands-on outreach is such an important part of what you do-- the mere fact that you show up in a somewhat remote town like Watsonville helps give the breed legitimacy to those residents who may have questions (and fears) about our favorite dogs. It's wonderful to hear you were met by such a welcomin' crowd!

Pip said...

What a wonderful story. I appreciate seeing this kind of follow-up from an organization I support. Way to go BADRAP!

And Beast... what a cutie! What a wonderful picture. I low seeing pics of the dogs at these events, it really shows that you don't have to be a rescuer to have a loved and good-tempered pit.

And speaking of good-tempered pits... my CGC instructor has started using my deaf, dog-social girl to bring other dogs out of their shells, and has asked if she can help with the dog reactive classes she runs (the instructor specializes in dogs with aggression or reactivity, I ended up with her because of her experience working with deaf dogs). It just amazes me... a pit bull as a therapy dog for other dogs?

I am a very lucky dog mom, and I probably would never have gotten a pit bull if it hadn't been for this wonderful blog. Thanks BADRAP.

Anonymous said...

The picture of "Beast" with his family... such Thuggery I've never seen!

In their honor, I'm making a donation.

Lynn said...

That is a wonderful photograph. I hope the family gets to see it. They are all so beautiful, especially the short round one in the front!
What a lucky dog Beast is to be surrounded by all that young energy. Thank you for sharing and congrats on your successful Fair.

Dianne in DC said...

Thanks again for your good work and supporting these kind folks. That's quite a little hike for you guys. I love seeing the pictures of bully dogs with kids loving over them. And as far as pits as therapy dogs for other dogs, you don't watch the Dog Whisperer? I know some of his methods are objectionable, but his Power of the Pack is based on his calm, well-tempered pit bull, Daddy.

PS Donna/treasurer why haven't you cashed my check?

Sarah said...

What a beautiful family! Great work, Bad Rap!

Unknown said...

You guys are the best!

Anonymous said...

I feel like I should get a tissue ready every time I read a new post on here. Every post brings out such emotion in me!

I think it is absolutely awesome what you did in this town. I just wish I lived closer (I'm in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida!!) because I would love to be involved and volunteer with Bad Rap. You guys really ARE the best!!