By Joanna D. Samson, FOTAS Vice President
When that nice FOTAS lady, Kathy Jacobs, asked me, Yeva, a stray nobody from no place, to be a spokesperson for my kind, I was proud to be asked, because my kind are the most misunderstood and mistreated breed of the canine world: we are the bully breed mixes, the pits and the pibbles.
We are easy to recognize, what with our noble, square heads; huge, goofy smiles; long tongues; and muscular physiques. But our truly best attribute is this: we adore our human companions, particularly the little ones, with the steadfast devotion of a canine Mother Theresa.
We are also great Americans. Thousands of my kind served as proud mascots for our troops during wartimes and were celebrated on World War I posters – Hall of Famers! Today, the tradition continues as many of us are trusted service and companion dogs for our veterans. Just like the American people, my kind are brave, generous of spirit, and able to rise above hardship and succeed, no matter how humble our beginnings.
Take me, for instance. My experience with humans had taught me to stay clear at all costs, but to my great surprise, the humans at the shelter were different. They spoke quietly, touched me softly, fed me regularly, and stopped by my kennel frequently just to chat. I began to trust them. I began to love them. They loved me back! I was wild with joy.
In one short month I went from a petrified, lonely stray to a Hall of Fame love bug and a spokeswoman for my kind. Is that an American success story or what?
Would I rather crawl into your lap than lay by your feet? Does my Hall of Fame kissing get a little sloppy? Yes and yes – guilty as charged, but I’m always gentle with the little ones, and I’ll fetch anything you throw all day long.
Then there’s my young friend, ChaCha, another shining example of American resilience and fortitude. She, too, was a homeless scared nobody, but after a little care and kindness from the Shelter staff and volunteers, she overcame her sad past and rose to Hall of Fame status in the Wiggle, Drop, Roll and Love-up a Human category. Whoa! That ChaCha’s downright breathtaking.
You see, it’s not just the brave mascots and the dedicated service dogs that are Hall of Famers – all of my kind on the adoption floor at the Aiken County Animal Shelter are Hall of Famers or else we wouldn’t be there. We are, quite simply, awesome.
FOTAS wants to hear about your Hall of Fame bully dog. Upload a photo to the FOTAS Facebook page, www.facebook.com/FOTASAiken, by March 20th and tell us about your Hall of Fame pet. The photo entry with the most “Likes” will win a large gel dog bed and 10 pounds of dog biscuits. How cool is that?
In the meantime, if you are looking for your next best friend at the Shelter, don’t just walk by us Hall of Famers. Yes, we may be very excited to see you, but if you give us a chance, we’ll dote on you forever.
Our lives are in your hands.