Monday, September 28, 2009

We Made It!

The Pinups for Pitbulls Team: Michele with Frankie, Jesse, Nicole with Addy and Maizy, Trish, and Gina.

The Chicago PAWS Walk For Their Lives yesterday was a great time! Everyone returned from last year, plus a few new additions, so we had a great group (all ladies, by the way)! This year I had started a "team" for Pinups for Pitbulls and we raised over $1000 between us, beating our goal.

The weather was beautiful for the end of September in Chicago, so no complaints there. The walk was long and we took many breaks because of our little fwee wegged friend, Addy, who was worn out by all the walking. She refused to be carried very far or to ride in a stroller (we tried!), so we walked at her pace. Jesse quite nimbly handed out Pinups for Pitbulls fliers to people walking with pit bulls (we had a fun time trying to spot the pitties). By the time we got back the the finish line, they had disassembled it and there was no one there to cheer for our accomplishment. Boo.

The walk had about 4,000 participants this year and I think the money raised was in the neighborhood of $250,000! Great news!

We didn't hang around too long, but we did have to go to the doggie massage tent so that Maizy, Addy, and Frankie could get a well-deserved massage. Also, Maizy spent some time playing in the water (which was meant for drinking). This video I took cracks me up. Look at how wet Addy is from her unexpected splashing.

On the way home, we made a well-deserved stop at Fritz Pastry which I cannot recommend enough if you are in Chicago. The food they make is delicious and some of their items are even vegan (ask for which items are vegan, but I recommend the coffee cake or the blueberry muffin). They also have a great little outdoor deck that is perfect for tired doggies.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Addy Loves Tug

Addy couldn't stand it that the Brown Dog Dad was not trying to get her toy, so she kept putting it in his hand so he would tug it. :)

Thursday, September 24, 2009

A Busy Week

It is a busy week for us this week in terms of anniversaries. Yesterday was both Justice kitty's (guesstimated) birthday as well as the 3rd anniversary of Probert's Gotcha Day! And today is the 4th anniversary of Wrigley's Gotcha Day! Glad to have them all in the pack and I am reminded every day of how much I love their furry butts.
Puppy Wrigley.

Puppy Probert.

A recent picture of how I can often be sitting while working on the computer: knees up, Justice sandwiched happily in my lap.

And Another Sad Story in the Media

Yesterday the story broke of a bust on a dog fighting ring (ran out of the same home as a licensed day care) in Maywood, which is not so very far from where we live. It is always harder when these things happen close to home. The original article was illustrated with a "vicious dog fighting" graphic which has been replaced with some photos, but really bothered me and definitely distracted from the issue at hand. Can we get a "vicious humans" graphic, please? I have read a lot of dog fighting stories in the media and this is maybe one of the worst as far as the descriptions of the conditions of the dogs who were found, so I recommend that you read at your own risk.

This morning I read the updated story, which is illustrated with a painfully adorable picture of the Cook County Sheriff holding a 4-week-old white pit bull puppy that could melt any heart. Seriously, adorable.

A few things really struck me about this story:
1) The majority of the comments (as far as I read) have been surprisingly positive in terms of not bashing the breed. I don't know how people could read a story like this and still blame the dogs. These conditions are not fit for anyone and it is no wonder that these dogs may not be happy to see people. They are AFRAID.
2) The comment in the story of one of the neighbors that she was (understandably) afraid of these dogs and is glad that they have been removed. Okay, well now you still have to live alongside these PEOPLE and you are okay with that?
3) One of the suspects spoke to the media and is quoted as dismissing what the police have found as nothing major. Not something you see every day.
4) As the police were investigating this home, they look into the neighbors yard and see ANOTHER abused pit bull and subsequently bust that guy, too.
5) There is a law against felons owning an unaltered dog?
6) It is no wonder that people can grow up with a lack of compassion for animals when this house contained a daycare and the children were literally playing outside beside abused and mangled dogs. We need to work so hard to teach the next generation that this is not normal or right.

We will see where this story goes, but I think the public at large is definitely getting on the side of anti-dog fighting and I can only hope that this case will be another step towards ending dog fighting in our society completely.

Now go and hug your dogs.

Monday, September 21, 2009

This just in...

Check out Probert and I in the local news!! Please leave a comment on the paper's website to thank them for doing a positive story about pit bulls!

Dog lover advances the cause of pit bulls

By Adam Rosen,
Berwyn Life
Mon Sep 21, 2009, 10:43 AM CDT
Berwyn, IL -

Nicole Hopman has always enjoyed the company of pit bulls, so much so that she has dressed up as a pin-up girl to raise money for the breed she loves.

"They’re the breed of dog that is most in need of responsible ownership,” Hopman said. “A lot of people are just getting them to fight or train the wrong way and it doesn’t help the breed at all.”

In 2007, Hopman heard from Little Darling, a pinup model and burlesque performer and creator of the “Pinups for Pit bulls” calendar, that she had seen photos of her Hopman’s pit bull and Probert wanted the dog to appear in the 2007 calendar. Hopman accepted, and was brought in the following year to appear beside her canine friend for the 2008 calendar.

This year, Hopman and Probert did a photo shoot with local photographer Chris Zibutis and submitted her best photos to the calendar.

If Hopman is one of the lucky 12 chosen, it will be her second appearance in the calendar and third for Probert.

Even if she is not included, Hopman will host a calendar release part Nov. 6 at The Exit in Chicago. However, half of the stars in the calendar will not be allowed admittance.

“There are no dogs allowed, but there will be many dog lovers there,” Hopman said.

Probert the pit bull received his name from the former Chicago Blackhawks and Detroit Red Wings forward Bob Probert, who was notoriously known for his enforcer style of play. Nicole, a Red Wings fan, agreed with her husband Shawn, a Blackhawks fan, on the name.

& quotable
“For me it’s disappointing that there are people out there who are willing to exploit a dogs loyalty for profit, and it’s disappointing that someone has the capacity to be so cruel.”

Calendar preorder available
The “Pinups for Pit bulls” calendar will go on sale in early November starting with the launch party Nov. 6, but calendars can already be pre-ordered at the organizations Web site,

More about Nicole
OTHER PETS Addy, a pit bull
HOBBIES Baking, yoga
JOB Yoga teacher in Oak Park

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Happy Sunday!

Addy holding the same de-footed Cuz as Maizy in the previous entry. Obviously, Addy is much littler.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Not Dead Yet

Hello! Just a quick update to say hello and that we're still around and doing fine. Lots has been going on, all of which has kept me from updating the blog. I have mostly spent my time working hard on getting things organized for the Pinups for Pitbulls Calendar Release Party in November. This week Addison graduated Advanced Obedience at Anything is Pawsible, which was great. She finally learned to "stay" in a stand position and I was so proud of her. We have some work to do, definitely, but I think she has a chance of passing the CGC test in a few months maybe.

Anyway, I don't want to post a huge wall of text, so I will post again soon with pictures! Of pups!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

In the News

Two cool stories that I wanted to share today:

1) This story from April about "wild" dogs in Moscow who have learned to take the trains into the city center where they beg for food before taking the trains back home at night where they rest and do the same thing again the next day. This story is simultaneously adorable and sad. I want to hug all of those dogs. (Even if you don't read, at least click to look at the cute pictures.)

2) This story from today which reports on an ad that Main Line Animal Rescue in Philly has placed in Washington DC (and which will likely appear in other areas) that says that for every time Michael Vick is tackled in that region's game, 5 bags of dog food will be donated to a local shelter. The ad also encourages people to volunteer at their local shelter and perhaps spend time "hugging a homeless Pit Bull." I'm all for this. Homeless pups need hugs.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

An Event!

I've posted before about Pinups for Pitbulls and I think even shared the picture of Maizy, Probert, and me from the 2008 Pinups for Pitbulls calendar as well as the picture of Probert and another human model in the (first ever) 2007 calendar. Well, this year we've stepped it up a notch and not only did we submit a photo for the 2010 calendar (just wait and see which dogs made it!), but I am also organizing a fundraiser for Pinups for Pitbulls right here in Chicago!

Please pass the word on about the event and if you are in the area, it would be awesome to see you there! Also, if you have a business or know someone who does, we are currently in need of items for the raffle!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Demo the Dog

Quite possibly one of the cutest things I've ever seen is this book, Demo: The Story of a Junkyard Dog. I love the idea for the story, I love the illustrations, I love the whole darn thing! Will definitely be picking up a copy and maybe a second one to donate to the local library. Speaking of the local library, Maizy goes back for her "kids reading to dogs" program in October. I think this is a story that she would not get tired of hearing!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Two Pets, One Bed

Is Justice a giant cat or is Addy a small dog? Maybe a little of both.