Diva, Westfield, NJ

Hi, I’m Diva! I remember the day back in 2008 when I met my “furever” family. I was living at a veterinarian’s office in Queens, N.Y. I lived there for an entire year after I was rescued by For Our Friends, Inc., nonprofit, no kill, rescue group based in Queens, NY.

I met lots of people during that year at the vet’s office, but no one was willing to take me home. They all said I was too big at 80 pounds and that I was something called a “pit bull.” This sounded so strange to me cuz I always thought I was a dog!

My new family drove all the way from New Jersey to meet me. The day we met, we all fell in love with each other. They filled out some papers that day and later, the folks at For Our Friends, Inc. made some phone calls. On Jan. 23, 2008, my new family drove back to Queens, loaded me in the car and brought me to my new home in New Jersey.

Over the next few months, I learned to sit, lie down, stay, wait, and how to walk calmly on a leash. I also learned not to jump up when I meet people, but I love to give big sloppy kisses when I’m allowed. Even now, when my mom comes home from work, I smack myself in the face with my tail because my butt wiggles so much. But she hugs me and kisses me, and I hardly even feel it. 🙂

After all the years of sleeping outside on the ground, I now have my pick of a king-sized bed, two queen‑sized beds, the couch — or “my” bed — in the living room. My favorite things to do are sleep, eat, play tug-of-war, sleep, eat, chew on bones, sleep, eat, take walks, play at the dog park, sleep, eat and, oh yeah, the zoomies!

Strangely, I still hear those words — “pit bull” — when people see me. They say things like, “Aww, she’s so cute,” or “What a beautiful dog,” and “Is she a pit bull?” But you know what’s really funny? My family just smiles proudly and says, “Yes, she is a pit bull.” It seems they’re happy to show people how loving, polite, and respectful I am. My mom even has two signs on the back of our car; one says “Pit Bull” and the other says, “The more men I meet, the more I love my dog.” 🙂 She says that I’m the best four-legged buddy she’s ever had, and she wants everyone to know it.

There’s a daycare center down the street from our home where the human parents bring their little ones. Every weekday morning at about 9 a.m. when I take my walk, those little humans come over to pet me and give me hugs. Their parents used to be a little afraid of me, but now even the parents come to give me love.

My family tells me all the time how much they love me and how lucky they feel to have found me. The three of us, together, are a real testimony to the love, joy and companionship that can happen between a happy dog they call a “pit bull” and her two-legged family members.

I only wish every pit bull could experience it too.

My name is Diva and I’m not a monster.

Parent: Barbara

Editor’s Note: On October 24, 2014, Diva’s mom informed us of Diva’s passing.

“It is with the heaviest of hearts that I tell you that we sent our precious Diva across the rainbow bridge. She was in tremendous discomfort due to cancer in the spleen, and it was the most loving decision we could make to let her go home. It has been, by far, the hardest thing I have ever done. But I know it was the right thing. But I miss my friend; I miss my soulmate. I pray the others have welcomed her with open arms and loving hearts until I join her one day. Please give your furry friends an extra kiss and hug tonight!!”

Thank you, Barbara, for giving Diva the best life any girl could ask for.