Hazel, Waikato, New Zealand

Hi , I am Hazel The Pitbull. My Mum and Dad rescued me from being put to sleep because of my breed.

I was rescued from Waikato SPCA on the 12th of April 2013. I was 3 months old at the time and was brought into Waikato SPCA from another shelter because my Mum and Dad were looking to adopt a Pit bull. Usually I would have been put to sleep because of my breed but a friend of Mum’s who was working at the SPCA new that Mum wanted a Pit bull puppy so I was offered to her first.

Mum and Dad could not say no because I was just so cute. šŸ™‚

Since the day that Mum brought me home she knew that she was going to do a lot to entertain me but also to prove to others that pit bulls are good dogs. I have passed puppy class, obedience class, tracking course, advanced tracking and I am now taking part in agility. Through each one of these courses I have been able to prove to people that I get on with other dogs, show them how affectionate I am and Mum has been able to educate people on Pit bulls.

I love people and giving lots of kisses so Mum looked into pet therapy. In New Zealand there is a main pet therapy organization called Canine Friends. They advertised on their flyers and website that they accept all breeds as long as they pass the test that they do. Mum applied for me and we were so excited that we might be apart of something like Canine Friends…

The lady got back to me and said that she would not be testing me because they do not test dangerous dogs!!!

This was a lady who had never met me and apparently tested any breed. My Mum was very upset that someone would call me dangerous without even knowing me!

So we decided to be better than them and do it all by ourselves. We contacted the local rest home and went in for our first visit! Everyone loved me and the manager, Rachel, even came down just to meet me. Everyone was surprised at how calm and affectionate I was for such a young puppy.

I have now been going into the rest home two or three times a month for the past 6 months. I have got even better at pet therapy and I have impressed so many people. It feels good to prove Canine Friends wrong and we are glad they said no to us because it has made Mum and I realize we need to do more to show people who I really am. I plan in the future to move onto more rest homes and hopefully children’s hospitals.

I started my Facebook page as a bit of fun to put up photos and had no idea that so many people would be interested. Today I have more than 6,000 friends and I love every single one of them. I now use my Facebook page to educate people and show people what an every day pit bull gets up to. I also used my page to fundraise for dogs who need surgery! Last year I raised $800 for a dog named Lucy who was hit by a car! We want to show people we care about all animals!

I also love going to dog events! Last year I went to a pooch racing day and I raced with lots of other dogs. I didn’t win but I did show people that a pit bull can take part in those events to! I also went to Paws in The Park and dressed up as a Lady bug. šŸ™‚

I like going to these events as I get to meet a lot of new people who have never met a pit bull before! Some of these people tell Mum that they are scared because of the media but then they realize they have never met one!! That’s when they meet me and i give them lots of slobbery kisses and they fall in love with me.

Mum says its great knowing that we have changed someone’s mind on Pit bulls and we hope to change many more in the future.

Hazel xxx

Parent: Alanna