Most Viewed Stories
Adoptable dogs at Pit Bull Palooza in YC
Macey was found by the Franklin Road bypass after she was struck by a car. Patchwork was found in the Walmart parking lot in Yuba City with road rash.
Their wounds left scars.
But on Saturday, the two lively dogs, stars of the Pit Bull Palooza adoption event at PetSmart, were no worse for wear.
The event, which freed them from the confines of the Sutter County animal shelter for the day, gave them a chance to meet dozens of other dogs and people — as many as they could get their noses on.
Megan Greve, deputy county administrative officer, praised the volunteer group ResQPaws for focusing on pit bull adoptions.
"At least half the dogs in the shelter are pit bulls," she said. "It's difficult to find homes for them."
Fear about the breed, Greve said, adds to the difficulty.
"But we have the same percentage of nice, adoptable pit bulls (in the shelter) as we do other animals," she said.
Macey's tan and white body wagged along with her tail as several Chihuahuas approached her at once, gesturing to play.
She was brought into the shelter on Dec. 10 by someone who found her wandering, stray and slightly injured.
"No one's come looking for her," said Liz Fredieu, the event coordinator.
"She's so nice. Such a good girl," said ResQPaws volunteer Katie Woodruff.
Before the organization will sponsor a dog, it must be temperament-tested, Fredieu said. Volunteers run the animal through a series of trials involving socialization with other dogs and people to make sure it is well-socialized and responds appropriately to a range of situations.
"They will be able to be adopted by a family with children and other dogs," Fredieu said. "It's important that every animal that comes through is a great ambassador for its breed."
Pit bulls suffer as strays and victims of euthanasia throughout the region in higher larger numbers than other breeds, Fredieu said, partly because of myths that suggest the breed is inherently vicious.
"They're highly motivated to do whatever it is their owner wants, and that trait gets exploited," Fredieu said.
And because they are both deliberately and accidentally bred in high numbers, too few receive the appropriate care they need to make good pets.
"This area in particular has a huge number of back yard breeders and people who are not spaying and neutering their animals," she said. "They (pit bulls) run around loose and wind up at the shelter. The shelter is their dumping ground."
And large, athletic dogs fare especially poorly in confined spaces, Greve said.
"They're a big dog, so they can't typically share a kennel with another dog." she said.
The prevalence of such dogs at the shelter is ultimately costly to taxpayers and the fate of all the facility's animals.
"It means a lot more overcrowding," she said. "It's a really, really tough situation."
The same reputation that has led to an outright ban of the breed in some parts of California and elsewhere, Greve said, is a product of irresponsible dog owners and breeders.
"A dog is only as good as its owner, and that's true for a Labrador or a poodle or a pit bull," she said. "Pit bulls have a certain look, so some people who want to appear tough or scare people are attracted to them."
Those people do not always make the most responsible pet owners.
"Unfortunately, we see the ones (pit bulls) that are not treated properly," Greve said.
The best thing a pet owner can do for the health and safety of all the community's animals, she said, "is to make sure your pets are spayed or neutered — regardless of the breed. It is your responsibility."