If you look closely at the collars of Kim and Kris Gerlach’s dogs, you’ll see a round yellow tag on two of them. On that tag are four words: “I’m a Therapy Dog”. The Gerlachs take a lot of pride in the work they do with their dogs, Victor and Nikki. Lady, their newest addition, will likely follow in the paw prints of her adopted big brother and sister. Read More
Marla Moore and Chance live in Lakewood, Colorado and have been a therapy team for two years. They are certified through two therapy dog organizations: Pet Partners and Alliance of Therapy Dogs. Due to living in a state with some of the most stringent Breed-Specific legislation currently in place, Marla has devoted her advocacy efforts to educating the public and providing community outreach for Animals For Therapy, of which she is a member. This involves being a resource for anyone with pit bull related questions, therapy or otherwise. She believes that having Chance out in the community as an ambassador is the most effective way to change people’s perceptions of pit bull type dogs. They continue to change people’s minds one visit at a time while providing comfort, joy and healing utilizing the powerful human animal bond.
Kane was surrendered to a rescue at 6 weeks old but the rescue didn’t want a pit bull, so they wanted to send him to a shelter. Cassie couldn’t let that happen and ended up keeping him. Kane introduced Cassie into the 4H world, where they competed for 6 years earning multiple grand and reserve grand champion titles. Their first year was a little rough, because the parents did not like the idea of having a pit bull type dog around their children or dogs, but Kane was eventually a favorite among everyone.
When you have this many dogs they become your life. And when 5 of them are special needs, it teaches you about life. You learn what limits are and that they don’t really exist unless you let them. You see that life and happiness carry more weight than most things in life. And when you have two badass moms, life’s pretty good.
Ruth and Rick Johnson have lots of experience with dogs. They owned German Shorthaired Pointers for several years, but after their last German Shorthair passed away, they decided to look at other breeds of dogs. Weimaraners were a breed they were interested in, but Ruth had another type of dog in mind too. “I wanted a pit bull for years,” said Ruth, “But there just weren’t that many available here years ago.”
In October 2011, Ruth met Holly. The white dog with brindle patches on her back was a recent local surrender to Paws and Claws, an animal shelter in Rochester, MN. “She was so nice, and she was so pretty,” said Ruth. “I told Rick, ‘you have to meet this dog!’” Read More
Rhea Moriarity is currently the Director of Training and Behavior at Longmont Humane Society. As an open admission shelter, LHS has achieved a live release rate for dogs of 96%. The intake of pit bull type dogs is 12-13%, but due to public perception and several areas surrounding Longmont with Breed Specific Legislation (BSL), their length of stay is twice as long as other breeds and occupy up to 50% of the kennels. The shelter has a national reputation for it’s training department, and dogs are placed on a wait list from all over the country for admission to the behavior and training program. Read More
Richard Frejomil II has been a dog trainer for over six years, and an AKC CGC evaluator for over two years, who is certified to administer the puppy S.T.A.R., Canine Good Citizen, and Community Canine exam.. He currently teaches basic obedience, intro to Rally-O, and dog agility. Read More
When Mary and Chad Nordstrom were considering adopting a second dog in 2012, they didn’t have a particular breed of dog in mind. They wanted a dog that would be a good companion to their 12-year-old rat terrier, Dobber. One dog Mary was sure they wouldn’t be adopting was a pit bull.
Shawn is from and currently resides in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Some of you may know him better by his gorgeous pup, Salvador or Sal (but we’ll get to that later).
Shawn has had dogs his entire life but never understood anything about training. “To me it was the basics of sit and stay and that was it.” Then he adopted Salvador and his life has changed. “I thought I was adopting a dog and realized I adopted a whole classification of the many breeds that make up what we refer to as ‘pit bulls’.” Read More