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My Pit Bull History

By | 30 Miles East, Uncategorized | One Comment

Welcome to my Pit Bull history narrative. Quite frankly, I’m a little nervous. I am well aware that I will encounter naysayers and ill-informed opinions with this story. I am also exposing a very emotional side of me with this long, life tale of the Pit Bulls that are permanently etched in the fabric of my being. Alas, I cannot let the nervousness or the backlash stop me. I have much to say about this abhorrently misrepresented breed. As a life-long Pit Bull owner, I have seen the good, the bad and the downright horrific. My observations of those variables strongly lie within the human species, and not of the canines themselves. I believe the proliferation of their negative reputation lies largely with the media and the masses that believe what they are told. Before I delve into the history of the breed, their misrepresentation, and a million theorems attempting to dispel their stereotypes, allow me to share my own personal experiences with this incredible breed.


Roxy and I, circa 1988.

I will begin by prefacing that this will be an incredibly long story, and you may even need a tissue. My history with Pit Bulls runs deep. There is no way I can adequately account for my love for Pit Bulls by not sharing this with the greater universe.

As long as I can remember, I’ve only ever had a Pit Bull in my home. There are a few photos of me as a young girl with the first family pet I can remember. Her name was Roxy. I was probably 4 or 5 years old in the Roxy era. As young as I was, I do not remember much. I have foggy memories of my childhood. Why, I’m really not sure. I do, however, remember flashes of playing with my beloved dog. She was loyal, petite and gentle. She also had a small litter in her time with us. We kept one beautiful pup. Bruno was the newest addition to the family and I’m sure I loved him just as much as I did Roxy. What kid doesn’t love puppies?
As life would have it, I experienced some not so great things around 5 or 6 years old. Perhaps that’s the reason why I have such foggy memories of Roxy and Bruno. I may have inadvertently blocked it all out while pushing the negative life occurrences out of my brain. I won’t bore you all with of the details, so I’ll be brief. My parents separated shortly after my second sister was born. My mom, my sister and I moved in with my Grandmother. My dad moved in my with my Grandfather (his father). Roxy and Bruno went with him. Unfortunately, I was told that they had run away from my Grandfather’s house. I didn’t understand it. How could they just run off? Were they trying to find me? The story on their grand escape has always been vague, and I’ve never been able to get an exact answer on their disappearance. While their running away seemed plausible, something inside me felt like it was a made up story. Were they given away? Did they get hurt somehow? I’ll never know what really happened to Roxy and Bruno. All I know is it gave this little girl one more reason to cry that year.

Enter Sheba.


Young Sheba.

After several months apart and more blurred memories, my parents decided to work things out. We were a family again, and no family is complete without a dog in the backyard. My dad brought home a uniquely marked beauty. Sheba was black with gold and white markings. She was frequently mistaken for a Rottweiler, but she was definitely all Pit Bull. Fortunately,  I was a little older and my memories of Sheba were quite clear. Her loyalty seemed instantaneous and I immediately had a new best friend. What I didn’t realize at the time was my dad was raising her into what would perpetuate the horrible Pit Bull stereotype. When my parents reconciled, they bought a home in a neighborhood that was affordable. Unfortunately, an affordable home is not always synonymous with a safe neighborhood. The surrounding community  was “sketchy”. The previous owners had a son involved in some gang activity. The house was a target at one point or another. Bullet holes adorned the external walls. Alas, my parents purchased the home with the confidence that we would be safe. My dad patched up the bullet holes, and we would reside in that home for many years. The result of being in this neighborhood sealed Sheba’s fate in how she would be trained. Sheba became something Pit Bulls are not. Sheba became a guard dog. A human and animal aggressive guard dog. Many educated Pit Bull owners know that they were never meant to exist in this capacity. They are quite possibly the worst guard dogs out of any other canine breed. They are not inherently human aggressive and incredibly trusting of people. It takes a lot of work to get a Pit Bull to distrust humans. Whatever my dad did, it worked. She was molded into something I am now adamantly against. I will be very clear when I say that Sheba understood that we were part of her unit. All of us, down to my youngest sister (whom was born shortly after my parents’ reconciliation), were her favorite humans. Even my Grandma became one of her favorite humans when she came to live with us. I suppose when you supply fresh batches of beans and tortillas, she’d become your favorite person, too. Consequently, anyone outside of this unit was not welcome. I would also like to point out that this type of training firmly solidifies that every dog, no matter the breed, is a direct byproduct of how their owners raise them. I’ll cover that topic extensively in another entry. For purposes of my historical narrative, I’ll stick to the memories.

Simply stated, Sheba was amazing. Her love was unconditional. She oozed loyalty. I have no doubt in my mind that she would have protected us to the death. I suppose that was the main purpose behind her training. At any rate, she was our number one girl. My sisters and I played dress up with her, ran around with her in the yard and frequently painted her nails. She wouldn’t even flinch. A quick lick to the face was about as much of a reaction we’d get from her after a giving her a good doggy pedicure. As I grew older, my dad made sure I took on some of the responsibilities that came with caring for a dog. I bathed her, fed her, etc. Caring for her in this capacity gave me the understanding that she is so much more than just a dog. She is a living creature that depends on us for her survival.

Around this time, my dad brought over “a boyfriend” for Sheba, and we all know what that means. Within what seemed like days, my girl had become a mommy. A very nervous mommy. She was quite awkward around her litter. She stepped on one of her pups, permanently scarring it’s hip. I distinctly remember looking in her eyes and seeing this “HELP ME” gaze. Now, I also know that breeding an aggressive dog is a huge no-no. Alas, those were not my decisions. In the midst of the puppy-dom, parvo somehow got into the mix and we lost a few puppies to the disease. It angered me that we couldn’t save the pups we lost. It reaffirmed the lessons Sheba was teaching me: these creatures were completely dependent on us for their well-being. This only deepened my appreciation for my girl and broadened my perspective on having pets in general. From that point on, I really began to love her deeply. While others feared her, I adored her.


Sheba, always on guard.

As the years crept by, Sheba was unknowingly residing in my teen angst phase. When I was sad, she’d sit next to me as if she were ready to listen to my trivial teenage woes. When I was happy, she would follow me around like a puppy. She unknowingly became my teenage therapist. I would cry to her about many things- boys, parents, being an ugly duckling, being punk rock. No matter the phase, she was always there and always the same. We finally moved out of that neighborhood my sophomore year of High School. Sheba was now in a world where she didn’t have to be a guard dog. Unfortunately, that part of her did not stay behind in that home. Friends still couldn’t come near her. Anyone outside of our little unit was still not welcomed. Squirrels and small animals were still her tiny victims. Her new home, although foreign, still had her favorite people as it’s inhabitants, and with that her loyalty remained unphased.

Now, I’m nearing a point in the story that is the most difficult. Sheba was 12 years old and I was 17 when her health took a bad turn. We noticed that she was bleeding vaginally, even though she hadn’t experienced a heat in several years. The evidence was all over the backyard. My dad took her to the vet, and he came home with bad news. Sheba had uterine cancer. I begged my parents to “fix her”. The surgeries and treatments were far too expensive. They had “more important” expenditures to focus on. Obviously, as a young teen, I thought it was bullshit. They had jobs, they had money. Fix her. Fix her now. I saw them as heartless, but in reality, they were just trying to adequately provide for us. Again, teenage angst was boiling inside of me. My parents had decided to let Sheba live out her time with us for as long as she could hold on. In this time, my grandma was fixing her crazy homemade Mexican remedies to help ease her pain and bleeding. It seemed to work for a little while. Not long enough, though. I’ll never forget the day she left us. It was a warm spring day. While I was buried in homework with Nirvana blasting through my discman, Sheba was letting my dad know it was her time. He called us into the kitchen to let us know that he was taking her to put her to be put to sleep. He couldn’t let her continue to suffer. Mind you, I had already been through my fair share of ups and downs growing up. Nothing rattled me quite like this. My dad propped her in the garage so we could come in and say our goodbyes. The few steps out to the garage were the worst few steps I had taken in my young life. I saw her laying in the coolness of the garage, weak and out of breath. As we entered, she attempted to stand up to greet us like she always would. Her knees buckled. So did mine. I dropped to floor with my arms firmly, but gently wrapped around her neck. I cried and cried, refusing to let her go. In the midst of my sobbing I whispered in her ear, “If I were rich, I would’ve cured you”. My sisters and mom, also weeping, hugged her fiercely and said their goodbyes. My dad carried her out to the family van that was covered in towels and sheets. Her bleeding was uncontrollable. She looked at us knowing it would be the last time she would lay eyes on us. When my dad placed her in the van, I screamed, “I love you, Sheba! I love you!”. I didn’t care if the whole neighborhood heard me. I was screaming it with as much force and intent as I could. I wanted her to know what she meant to me. Deep down, I know she did. As I screamed and wept, she began to whimper. I ran off to my room and slammed the door shut. I screamed her name into my pillow one more time and cried for hours. I really hadn’t suffered a loss quite like this. I still cry for her to this day. It sounds crazy, but it’s true. I had been around many dogs. None compared to her. None. In retrospect, I realize how unfortunate others were in not being able to experience her presence as a loyal friend. I wish they had. She was incredible. She’ll always be my first [dog] love.

Enter Penny.


Puppy-sized Penny.

About two months later, my sister and dad walk through the door with a puppy they had spotted at the Baldwin Park Animal Shelter (18.7 miles east). I was pissed. When did they conspire to do this? I was still in mourning, and now here’s this pup barging into my life. I angrily shouted, “Sheba’s body isn’t even cold yet, and you bring a puppy home?!”. I could see that my sister’s excitement had dwindled by my knee-jerk reaction. So, I swallowed my pride and approached the puppy, trying to absorb the tears behind my eyes. I gently told my sister “She’s really cute, did you pick her out?”. “No, dad did”, she said with a smile. Little did I know, that tiny copper-haired Pit Bull pup would be one of the goofiest Pit Bulls we’d ever live with. While we were out watching her romp around in the yard, my mom came up with the perfect name. “I got it!”, she said with excitement, “Penny! She’s the same color as a penny!”. So, Penny it was.

Penny was crazy from the start. She had loads of energy. Fortunately, we had a huge backyard for her to roam around in and explore. She was now in Sheba’s old domain. She also became a shining example of what Pit Bulls really are: Sweet, goofy, fun, loving…the list goes on.

We faced more challenges as a family shortly after Penny came into our lives. My father took on a profession that had him working erratic hours. Fortunate for Penny, becoming a guard dog was not in the cards. She would’ve sucked at being a guard dog anyway. Since my dad had little time to train her, she became a little undisciplined and wild. Still, not a mean bone in her body. A couple years eked by, and my parents divorced. Dealing with that trauma and the decisions I had to make as young adult were at the forefront of my priorities. Penny’s existence was the primary focus of my grandma and my younger sister’s life. This isn’t to say that I ignored Penny. Quite the contrary. I cared for her and loved her dearly. I just didn’t give myself the opportunity to bond with her the way I did with Sheba. That was to my own detriment. Even amongst the chaos, her goofy face made things seem normal in a home that was suffering from tremendous imbalance. She brought serenity to my younger sisters. She taught them the lessons Sheba had taught me. She had become my middle sister’s best friend and her confidant in troublesome times. The same rang true for my youngest sister. Penny was their rock.


Teenage Penny, waiting for a treat.

Penny’s wild and crazy ways would slowly calm down as each year rolled by. Balance in the home was seemingly restored until I moved out. That’s another story for another day. Still, Penny’s unfailing love was there, and she was always ready for a piece of tortilla and a belly rub when I’d visit home. She’d run through the house full force every chance she got. She took my knees out more than once. Just a sign of her not being properly trained. Even then, I didn’t mind. She was still a good girl deep down. I also knew her very presence kept my Mom, sisters and grandma safe. Any would-be robber wouldn’t have the slightest clue she’d show them the silverware. Her negative stereotype kept harm at bay.

As you can imagine, Penny saw many things happen in our lives. Divorce, me flying the coop, death, tragedy, happiness, sadness. She was there for it all. What she didn’t expect was for me to bring home a vivacious little white haired pup for her to meet.

Enter Zoe.


Zoe and her puppy muscles.

My boyfriend (now my husband) had just moved out on his own. He moved into a bachelor pad with an ample yard. He had talked about possibly getting a dog now that he was out on his own. During this time, we were entering our second year of dating. The anniversary of our second year of courtship was special. This was the first time I had been in a long relationship since my high school boyfriend. I dated here and there, but this boyfriend was different. Given the magnitude of this huge step in relational maturation, I set out to find the perfect gift. What could be more perfect than a puppy? I took the conversation we had about him getting a dog and ran with it. Also, there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to get him a Pit Bull. I wanted him to experience how amazing these dogs really are. I searched high and low. I ended up in a very shady part of West Covina (20 miles east) with my mom. We went to a community of run-down condos. The community had an indefinite gang problem. An unfortunate, yet all too familiar place for Pit Bulls. I knock on Mr. Cholo’s door and he showed me the litter his little lady had produced. Mama Pit was a petite brindle. Daddy Pit was one of the most majestic looking Pit Bulls I have ever seen. He was all white and all confidence. He was THE textbook Pit.  Perfect head structure, perfect height…everything. Right then I knew I wanted to see all of the pups. Now, many of you are probably wondering why I didn’t go to a shelter. While I did visit three local shelters, there were no pups. I wanted a puppy. Not only that, the rules on adopting an older pit were incredibly stringent 10 years ago. Since Penny had been adopted out of Baldwin Park Animal Shelter, we were on file as having a dog. Although I was already out of the house, I was still using my mom’s address. We were instantly denied. Now, I also have a strange view on this that many of you may not agree with. While I wholeheartedly advocate rescuing Pit Bulls from shelters, I also wholeheartedly advocate taking Pit Bulls out of potentially harmful situations, even if it’s through a private breeder. Unfortunately, some of the stereotypes of Pit Bull owners aren’t very positive either. This breeder in West Covina solidified the typical gangster with a Pit Bull stereotype that I am continually fighting against. Perhaps another entry I’ll touch on. I feel, that sometimes, taking a Pit Bull out of those areas is a rescue itself. Who knows what kind of people are showing up and buying these pups. There’s no screenings, home-checks…nada. So, in some ways, buying from this “type” of breeder is like a mini-rescue. Just my view.

Anyway, out came the barrage of puppies. I picked up a beautiful all white female with big brown spots covering her head. I held her close to my face and she bit my nose. I was put off by that for some reason, even though it was normal puppy behavior. I asked Mr. Cholo if there were any other dogs as if I knew he was hiding some others. He sighed. “Alright, I got one more.” Apparently he was hoping to hold onto this one. He went out back to retrieve said pup. He opened the door and set a tiny little pup down to roam free. Right there, a beautiful green-eyed, spunky girl trotted her way into my heart. She had very unique markings-an all white body with one brown ear and one spotted ear. I swooped her up and put her nose to my nose. She licked my face, and I fell in love. Mr. Cholo and I sealed the deal. Little sassy pants was going to be the best anniversary gift ever. She proved it to be true (and still does till this day). I put her in the car and she had this “So, where are we going?” look on her face. It was almost as if she knew she was meant to be with us.

I spent the next few nights cuddling and falling in love with nameless pup. Right from the start, she exuded loyalty and the never ending need to be cuddled. Anniversary day was upon us, and I was eager to get puppy-face over to the boyfriend.

We arrived late afternoon at the bachelor pad,  and I called boyfriend to come help me get “some things” out of the car. Pup was fast asleep on the passenger seat, wrapped in a blanket with a big purple bow around her neck. Boyfriend opens the passenger side door and says with laughter, “Is this a baby cow?”. I reply sarcastically, “Yes, I bought you a baby cow”. Admittedly, the pup looked like a baby cow with her all white body and uniquely marked ears. When boyfriend picked her up, he was speechless. I just doomed him with puppy training, puppy diarrhea and sleepless nights. Upon picking her up and holding her, those thoughts escaped him for the moment. He was quite taken with her, just as I was. We took her to the park to roam around. Her little 10 pound body managed to find a group of kids and romped around with them for a while. When it was time for the kids to leave, they ran her back over to us. Being a curious puppy, she ran up to a lady pushing a stroller. Stroller lady looked terrified. Terrified of a 10 pound puppy. It was then that I really began to feel the public backlash that comes with Pit Bull ownership. Fast-forward to later in the day. Boyfriend calls his mom and shares the news that he’s the new owner of a pup. A Pit Bull pup. She immediately expressed her concern with owning a Pit Bull: they’re dangerous,they have lockjaw, they turn on family members, etc. etc. Boyfriend had good experiences with a friend’s Pit Bull named Smokey (RIP), so he wasn’t put off by it. We took the chance and took puppy over to boyfriend’s parents house. Guess what? I didn’t know it then, but my future mother-in-law became an immediate Pit Bull advocate. Pup worked her charms on future mom-in-law and into the hearts of the rest of the family.


Teenage Zoe.

A couple of weeks go by, and pup is still nameless. Finding the perfect name that embodies a dog’s personality isn’t easy. Many parents of furry children know this to be true. The list of suggestions were quite hilarious. For comedic purposes: Thumbelina, Herodias and Chicken-fucker (drunken party night) somehow ended up on the list (we have weird friends). Between the endless suggestions, we ended up on Zoe. A tiny name for for such an amazing companion. Zoe would reside with boyfriend at the bachelor pad for quite sometime. She experienced crazy roommates, wild parties, band practices, break-ups, reconciliations…she was quite the experienced pup as the years rolled on. She became boyfriend’s number one girl. Deep down, I know she still is (haha). When boyfriend and I married some years later, we finally  became our own little unit. It was obvious Zoe was in absolute heaven. No more wild parties and crazy roommates. It was just us. We were her universe, and she was ours. As with Penny, Zoe has seen her fair share of ups and downs. Her loyalty, incredible intelligence, love and companionship remain firmly intact.

Enter Hank.


Hank, our newest pup.

Husband and I had known for quite sometime that we wanted another dog. Although Zoe is, and will always be the Queen, we knew we wanted an addition to our unit. When we purchased our first home, we decided it was time to add to our family. There was never any question what breed of dog we would look into. Pit Bulls or bust, I say. We scouted everywhere, shelters, breeders, you name it. I was rejected by two rescues because we already had an older Pit Bull. We continued to searched high and low. There weren’t any pups that we connected with. Now, again, I know I’ll get shit for not going through a shelter. I tried, I really did. But as with a mate, connection is key. So, after failed attempts, I went about the “Zoe method”. I searched for pups in terrible neighborhoods. Sure enough, I found a bad neighborhood with the cutest pups I had seen yet. Husband and I took a trek to the city of Bell Gardens (8 miles south). It was a cold night, just weeks before Christmas (2012). We arrive, and Zoe is in the truck staring at us wanting to know when she can get out. Just as we approach the “breeders” home, cops screech in with lights and sirens blaring a few homes down. This was a rough neighborhood. Much worse than Zoe’s puppy territory. We proceeded anyway. We chat with “breeder” about his dogs and their history. Upon feeling comfortable with his history with the breed, we agree to see the litter. We were immediately bombarded with a handful of beautiful blue and fawn pups crawling all over our feet. There was one pup in particular that was quite mellow and subdued. He also followed around the breeder and would sit at his feet. “Can I see that one?”, I asked. “Sure”. I picked up the scrunchy faced pup and he was adorable. He had a beautiful fawn coat and blue eyes. We took Zoe out of the truck and let them interact. Zoe looked at the pup like it was an alien. After a few minutes, she seemed less confused and was sniffing the pup’s tiny body and gave it a few nudges with her snout. She seemed fine by the pup, so we took the plunge. Hank is now our newest Pit Bull addition, and he is quite the handful. He’s mellow, but very much in puppy phase. If you’re doing any record keeping in this story, you would’ve calculated by now that he is the first male Pit I’ve had since Bruno. Hank is 1-year old now and 85 pounds heavier than he was last year. My boy is a beast. A head-strong, gentle, goof-ball beast. He loves people and is the star whenever we’re out in public. My best-friend deemed him the “King of Old Town Pasadena”. People seem quite receptive to his presence whenever we take a stroll through there. He loves the attention. I do have one  interesting incident that I must share. Hank was 3 months old and probably 15 pounds. Still a small little guy, really. He had just been vaccinated, and I wanted to treat him by taking him to the pet store for some goodies and social interaction. I take him to Katie’s Pet Depot (28 miles east). This is a great place, by the way. Friendly, knowledgeable and non-judgmental staff when it comes to my dogs. Anyway, we go down one particular aisle and there is one dog there. It is a full-grown Maltese and it immediately shows signs of aggression. As I try and pass through and teach Hank to follow my lead in these situations, the Maltese tried to attack my pup. Hank submitted. A pit bull pup submitted to a rude and aggressive dog. A casual observer without a dog had the nerve to say, “I think the Maltese is a bit intimidated”. Did she not see that MY dog was attacked? A full-grown Maltese was intimidated by a puppy? My response, “Dogs do not breed discriminate, humans do, and that dog has aggression issues. Come on Hank, you’re not welcome down this aisle. Their loss”. I was incredibly irked and frustrated. I surprised myself. I was surprised that I didn’t tell that lady to go fuck herself, but I had to be the better person here. Not just for me, but for my Pit Bull. Oh, and did I receive an apology from Maltese owner? Nope.


Hank, pondering life at 1 year old.

Although Hank is daily testing our patience, still eating my shoes, and is in a constant state of play with Zoe (which tests her nerves quite frequently), I couldn’t be happier that he’s in our lives. Again, I believe we rescued Hank from that neighborhood.

Well, I hate to do this to you readers, but I have to bring on more sadness. Although we had the addition of Hank, things were not so easy for us in 2013. Of the major heartache we experienced, we lost our fun-loving, wild girl, Penny. She had aged quite a bit over the last year. Early signs of her not being well began when she found a small opening to hide underneath my mom’s house. She also stopped eating for a few days at a time. My sister repeatedly took her to the vet in hopes of finding out why she was acting so strange. The inept “veterinarian” they were visiting misdiagnosed Penny. He kept citing old age and arthritis, but my sister knew better. Penny wasn’t herself. It wasn’t until my sister decided to take her to another vet that she received the bad news. Penny had cancer, and it was well beyond the advanced stages. As with Sheba, my sister decided to hold on to Penny just a little while longer. It’s the selfishness and hope for a miracle in all of us I suppose. Again, grandma had concocted magical remedies and Penny was eating again and seemed pain-free for a bit.


Penny’s last day on Earth.

It was a rainy day in April when I received a phone call at work. I had just come out of a meeting when my co-worker rushed to my office door. “Erica, your sister called. It’s an emergency”. Right then, I knew it was Penny. My sister told me a day prior that Penny had slipped back into hiding and stopped eating. I began shaking and trying to hold back tears. I immediately dropped my meeting notes on my desk, shut my office door and ran for the parking lot. I flew home to pick up my husband, and we practically broke the sound barrier driving to my mom’s house. We promptly arrived, and as soon as I saw Penny, my heart began to break. My sister had her wrapped in a blanket out on the front porch while trying to hold back her tears. Penny was not able to control her bodily functions and was trembling. The white hair that grew around her snout over the years was as white as ever. Her eyes were in another place. We could see her soul slowly exiting. Everyone was home at my mom’s again, including my dad. My dad placed her weak and feeble body in my sister’s car, and off we went to her newest veterinarian. When we arrived at the vet’s office, we all began to cry, as we knew these were Penny’s final moments on earth. Watching my sister make the executive decision to put her best friend to rest was a surreal moment. The vet was gracious enough to let us all in for the procedure. My mom and grandma couldn’t bear to see her be euthanized. They waited outside the exam room. My dad picked up Penny and laid her body on the cold, stainless steel examination table. The vet put an IV into her vein and allowed us to say our goodbyes before injecting her. I told Penny that I loved her and that I would miss her very much. I pecked her snout and stepped back so my sisters could hold onto her. The vet assured us she wouldn’t feel a thing. I held onto one of her paws and tightly held my husband’s hand. I had never seen a pet be euthanized. We all felt that we owed it to her to be there when she took her last breaths. I felt I owed it to Sheba, as I didn’t see her go in her final moments. Soon after we said our last words, the vet injected Penny’s IV, and she let out a loud whimper. We lost it. I held her paw tight and held onto my husband for dear life. Again, an incredible amount of pain swept over us as we lost a beloved family member.

The vet saw how much she meant to all of us and did something not so “legal”. We took Penny home and laid her to rest in my mom’s backyard. Something I wish had been done for Sheba. We arrived back at my mom’s house still in tears. My dad, husband, and sister’s boyfriends began digging a very deep burial site under a large tree in the backyard. My dad created this cement stone encasing for Penny. Before he covered her body for her burial, we said some more goodbyes. My sister dropped her collar, her bone and some treats eight feet below us where Penny’s lifeless body lay. And just like that, another amazing Pit Bull had officially left our lives. My husband and I came home that evening mentally exhausted. My two furry babies didn’t have the slightest clue what we endured that day. Zoe, however, picked up on the sadness we were exuding. She sat beside me as I cried. I held my babies tight and wept for Penny again. I begged Zoe and Hank to never leave me. An impossible request, yes. I meant it, though. The bond I’ve established with Zoe and Hank is incredibly deep. Even more so than what I had with Sheba. Those that know me well know that Zoe and Hank are an enormous part of my life. They deserve to take up that kind of space in my heart and soul.


My two children, Hank and Zoe.

So, here we are present day, and that is my annotated history with Pit Bulls thus far. It’s a love story really. Do you have any life changing Pit Bull stories or memories? Share them with me! I’d love to hear them.



While writing, I was listening to:

Svefn-G-Englar by Sigur Ros

Achilles Last Stand by Led Zeppelin

Possibly Maybe by Bjork

Paper Bag by Fiona Apple

Money Rain Down by Big Black Delta

Darkest Dim by Tokimonsta

Dream Brother by Jeff Buckley

I am Thirty Miles East

By | 30 Miles East, News | No Comments

The featured image was taken by me at the BWI train station in Linthecum, Maryland.

Life Thirty Miles East of Los Angeles can seem like a different planet. Hell, any place out of the heart of L.A. can seems like Mars. Just ask those who live Downtown or in Hollywood. To them, we’re living in an alternate universe. Are we really that different though? Never mind that we share the same freeway woes, the same fake tans, the same pretentious latte orders or the same valley girl accent stereotypes. We even share the same kind of hipsters. Take a stroll through Claremont, my friends (34.8 miles east). These hipsters give Silverlake (5.2 miles north) a run for it’s money. It’s all the same, just a different geographical location. The amazing part about the unintentional melding of our Angeleno identity is when you visit other parts of the US. It’s not until then you realize how “L.A.” you are. Whether those in Downtown like it or not, we’re very much the same. Even those 30 miles east. Read More