Happy Tails

Here at Project Pet, we love all animals (but we have a special place in our hearts for the misunderstood, sweet, snuggly pit bulls). Here are a few animals who once were in danger of being euthanized and are now in wonderful, forever homes



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Sweet little Chloe came into the Project Pet family as an owner surrender, from a family who purchased her and could not care for her. She was our first small dog, and what a treat! She was adopted by the most wonderful family who takes her on vacations to Florida!

It was a brisk November afternoon, and I had taken the train into Manhattan for a meet and greet with a puppy looking for a new home. Even though i have had dogs for over 25 years (and often 3 at a time) this was a first for me. Yes, I was one of those people who purchased dogs from breeders and one of my dogs was even (GASP!) purchased at a pet store. I did not know anyone who had rescued pets and I honestly didn't know what to expect, but as soon as I saw this sweet little baby come running out of her Manhattan apartment with Emily, tail blazing, I knew that she would be the perfect addition to our family. We had just lost our beloved Bently after 14 beautiful years and our hearts were still a bit wounded when Chloe, the newest member of the family, arrived in Connecticut a day before Thanksgiving. Now, almost a year later I cant imagine our lives without her. She has more energy and love than any dog I have ever had, and any concerns I had about rescuing a dog have long since disappeared. Now, I tell all of my friends that rescue pets are the best in the world. Emily, thank you for making our family complete.


While I've always loved dogs, Rottweilers are what I've been drawn to for years. Anyone who has been around these gentle giants knows that their love, compassion, and loyalty is second to none.  Just over a year ago, I rescued one named Bettis.  He was 4 1/2 years old and he captured my heart and truly became my best friend.  He had not been to the vet in quite some time, so he needed to be neutered and to have his shots updated.  At the time of his neutering, his blood levels didn't come back up to par and the vet suggested antibiotics after his surgery.  After two weeks of antibiotics I took him back to have his blood retested, as he had also shown a slight loss in appetite.  An x-ray showed that he had a large tumor in his stomach which was attached to his spleen.  The chances of him making it through the surgery to remove the tumor were very slim.  On top of that, the blood test results suggested that the cancer had already begun spreading throughout his body.  The vet had given him a couple of days to a couple of months to live.  I was both shocked and deeply saddened by this unexpected news.  I already felt such a bond with Bettis and knew I would be lonely when he died.  As a result, I found myself spending time searching Petfinder yet again just out of curiosity.

    I am not really sure what my plan was when I started visiting Petfinder again, but things happen for a reason, I guess.  I decided that I would fill out a few applications with the hopes of speeding up the adoption process once Bettis died.  Then I saw Odin. Pictures of him immediately caught my eye, and I then spent every night for the next week checking to see a bio posted on him.  When I saw it finally there, I became even more intrigued.  I thought Odin and I would be a perfect match.  Living almost two hours away, I wasn't sure if having Bettis and meeting the adoption requirements was going to work, but I emailed ProjectPet and received a response from Jeff, who was fostering him, asking to fill out an application.  Before I knew it, I was on the phone with Jeff, making plans for Bettis and myself to meet Odin.  Jeff and Emily made me feel at ease, and the meeting went great.  I assured Emily and Jeff that I was interested in making Odin a part of my family.  A few weeks later Jeff and O
din made the long journey through a nasty snowstorm for the home visit.  The home visit went well, as Bettis was very welcoming to Odin. 

I then found myself the proud owner of not one, but two rather large rottweilers.  Anyone walking or driving by us on a walk was sure to look twice, as this was quite a sight.  There were many occasions when even I was not sure who was really walking who.

    All of the training Jeff did with Odin, and the detailed "Odin Manual" he put together made Odin's transition very easy.  Bettis and Odin got along great and Odin became a little brother to Bettis.  Unfortunately, roughly five months later, Bettis passed.  While Odin misses his buddy, he has soaked up the attention and training that he has been receiving.  Even though he can be intimidating because of his size, everyone who meets him absolutely adores him.  Time will only tell, but while he may never fill the shoes of Bettis, he has filled the void Bettis left, and I have a new best friend.  Thank you so much Emily and Jeff for everything you did for Odin, and for all that you do for Project Pet!


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Adopted August 2011 - From minutes away from death in Aruba's Kill Box to a loving home in New Jersey!

After losing our last rescue dog, Desi, after 6 short years of a medically challenged life, getting another dog was not really on my radar. I grew up in Aruba and had always said that a dog from Aruba would be my only other dog. After trying to bring a dog home last summer and not being able to due the larger size of an older puppy and the plane travel in the heat, I thought it was not meant to be. But I fould someone in Aruba who was willing to help me get a dog. She gave me Emily's email and said she just rescued 5 puppies from Aruba and brough them to New York. Three days later I am in New York City meeting "Viona". After a few days of thought, like, 'What am I doing getting an 8 week old puppy?'; My daughter is in college, my husband travels and wanted me to join him more and working full time, I decided the love of a pet outweighed all the reasons not to have one. Tiki (formerly Viona) was welcomed into our home. She became an instant playmate to my daughter Amanda and a member of the family. I was fortunate that I was able to bring her to work with me where she has become everyone's pet. She greets my fellow workers in the morning, lays on her bed and waits for her walks during the day! People cannot believe how well behaved she is, she has become my sidekick. It seems like she has always been with us. My husband says there are two of us from Aruba and two from New Jersey in our family. She has learned her boundaries in our yard, two acres of space to run in, which she does at breakneck speed. Fetch is a favorite game until she decides she does not want to listen anymore. Her presence at home has been a welcome change to the quiet nights I was home alone when family was traveling. Sometimes I think she is more cat than dog, her paws are like hands and she pounces on you every chance she gets. She is a gentle, agile and kind dog who just wants to be by your side. People stop me constatly to say what a beautiful dog she is, which I have to agree. She has a white heart on the top of her head, which is my favorite kissing spot. I guess she has alleviated any reservations I had about getting a dog since I now cannot imagine her not in our family. She continues to learn new things and I am excited to be starting agility classes with her in the next few weeks. I think it will be something she will love! The laughter she has brought into ths home was a beautiful gift. Thank you Emily for working with us.


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Arlo Theo and Woody Smit

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Coolidge (the cat!)

Coolidge was found on the hot summer streets in 2011, in the Lower East Side of NYC and is now loving life with his family in Brooklyn, NY

Coolidge is a fearless cat with lots of street smarts, moxy and cattitude. During the heatwave of August 2011, he approached Emily Tanen while she was walking two large dogs on the Lower East Side and demanded that she take him in, feed him and provide an air-conditioned asylum. He picked the right woman since she is a founder of rescue Project Pet, Inc. Simultaneously, across the East River in Brooklyn, Patrick and Randi just lost their cat Deegan to a terrible bout with cancer. They were not yet ready for a new cat but their adopted German Shepherd Sheba was missing Deegan something fierce, looking for him and crying all the time. And so, a search on Petfinder, led to Coolidge and he joined the family in October 2011. Cool is learning to walk on a leash so he can see the streets of NYC once again, this time as a visitor. Cool fits right in with the family and loves road trips. So far he's been to Mystic, CT,  Kingston, NY,  Asheville, NC, Green Bay, WI and Bucks County, PA.  He also enjoys torturing his big sister Sheba and bossing his parents around. For a black cat, he sure brings a lot of color to the family.


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Our most famous rescued dog! Sprout was used as bait, and then came into the city kill shelter by the police, with his eye hanging out of his head, and fresh wounds all over his emaciated body. Project Pet laid eyes on this boy, near death in his cage, and knew we were going to save him. He is now a wonderful, well balanced boy, living with two other dogs and an amazing dad! You can stay up to date on the life of Sprout by becoming a fan of his very own facebook page

It is hard to believe that Sprout has been part of my family for a year now.  Even though I have 2 other pits, Norma Jean and Kenneth, I’ve found myself defending the breed even more.  I am constantly amazed by people, some of them not even dog owners that know more about the American pit bull terrier than I do.  This being said, I have become even more involved with animal rescue and I put sprout out in the spotlight whenever possible.  Hopefully, we can do a little good.  Lately, it’s been good to see the story of a pittie rescuing a human.  Needless to say, I can’t say enough about the breed!

I’ve never rescued a “bait dog” before.  Frankly, I didn’t know what to expect.  Part of me thought that it would be like any other abandoned dog and the other part of me thought that I would be calling the dog whisperer every other day.  Well, as it turns out, it’s been a little bit of both.  When I picked up sprout, he was developmentally far behind a dog of his age (about 15 months).  He didn’t know 

how to play or interact with humans.  He was fearful of any object in my hand.  He didn’t know how to walk stairs, run fast, walk on a leash, etc…  Basically, his interaction with the world was minimal.  My guess it that he only knew the inside of a crate and his interactions with humans was certainly not in a loving way.

Since I’ve had Sprout his development has been a continuing metamorphosis. It seems that he is a little different every two weeks. He picks up new behaviors that were never developed as a puppy. For instance, he has become very vocal. He has many different sounds, from a defensive bark (for a stranger walking by my house) to a howl that is pure joy.  He especially likes his dog walker, my neighbor Danny.  He makes the best bark of joy when he sees Danny. It’s pure joy. He knows that good things are going to happen.

Because Sprout was not fed well, he probably developed some gastrointestinal issues During one of these events, I hadn’t fed Sprout for and day and a half. He need time to let his “GI” issues calm down.  Needless to say, he was hungry for the special meal I had prepared for him, boiled chicken and rice. This is where I made my first big mistake. I fed sprout in front of Kenneth and Norma Jean.  Sprout got about half way into his meal, without warning, he suddenly turned around and went after Kenneth. This was totally my fault but I beat myself up for weeks afterward. How could I let anything happen to my dogs? I’ve never had a fight before, not like that.

As it often turns out, dramatic negative events like Sprout and Kenneth’s altercation, have an overall positive effect.  I was put in contact with a truly great dog trainer, Joyce Sobe, talk about a dog whisperer!  I’ve learned to look for and correct behaviors with positive associations.  The incident between Kenneth and Sprout made me a much better pack leader.

So, at our first anniversary, Sprout is doing great!  I bring him everywhere.  We go to the bank, shopping, to Von on Bleeker St., Vermont, hiking, biking, etc… I think he is ready to learning how to swim, Norma Jean is an amazing swimmer, even at 12 years old! We have a lot more adventures in store. Sprout tells his story everywhere he goes!  


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Brie, adopted by a wonderful family with two children and another dog, living in Queens, NY

One March evening as Dad was bringing out the trash he came upon a sweet looking pup and his supposed owner, Jeff. Dad admired the little pup with her beautiful brindle coat and sweet brown eyes. He relayed this compliment to Jeff and Jeff was quick to explain that he was her foster. Knowing that Mom could not resist as she wanted a friend for our current dog Mavis, Dad asked Mom to come outside for a moment. That’s all it took…Mom was hooked.
Mom asked us if we would like to adopt a dog named Brie. Mom showed us pictures and we decided that we wanted to take care of her and give Mavis a playmate. Mom waited around like an expectant mom to hear the news.  After a few days we learned that she would be joining our family and our many adventures.
We quickly began calling Brie the Baby Bjorn dog. All Brie wanted in order to be happy was to snuggle us. The joke in our family was that she would be the most content being in a baby Bjorn close to us all day long. She lies close to us at night and gives all of the neighborhood kids a good old bath licking when they come to visit.
Our first big trip with Brie was driving down to Florida. After many rest stop runs we eventually made it. Brie and Mavis had a blast running in a big backyard and testing out the swimming pool. Mavis wouldn’t go near the pool so this made Brie very wary of the water. A little over a year later Dad was determined to turn them into water dogs. We were up at a friend’s lake house where all the kids and dogs got into a row boat. We rowed to the middle of the lake and the kids jumped out. Brie and Mavis decided to stay aboard. Brie went to the bow of the boat placed her paws on the top and was nicknamed Brie Washington.  
Mom called Mavis and Brie from the shore and they took a leap of faith and began swimming. All of us cheered and bet who would make it to the shore first. Brie was the winner! After that first jump we have been having a hard time keeping them in the boat.
A year has gone by and we celebrated her birthday with a “tuna cake”. We thank Jeff, her former foster, for all his support as Brie has come a long way. We know that our life wouldn’t be as colorful without her. We all love her very much!
Thank you Project Pet!
- Brie’s human siblings


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Adopted in November 2010 to the cutest couple ever who took our Ringo all the way to Las Vegas! What a lucky pup.

When the thought of bringing a dog into our New York City apartment first popped up, our southern sensibilities immediately had reservations. Growing up with dogs in the Midwest and South meant great weather and room for a young pup to stretch and play. The idea of having a dog in Manhattan with the small spaces and less than ideal winters made us cringe, so we agreed to abandon the idea. But that just meant I spent more time looking at dogs online while at work instead of at home.

One day I came across Project Pet and their mission to save one of the most misunderstood breeds. After touching base with Emily, we were introduced to a beautiful young female Pittie that was full of life and we fell in love immediately. We emailed back and forth with her foster Katherine and couldn’t wait to adopt.  Little did we know we were setting ourselves up for a fall. We were lucky enough to live in a nice building in NYC, but the building management had a very arbitrary “dog screening” process. Though she met all the qualifications, our building told us we could not have her because she “looked aggressive”. We let Emily and Katherine know and quite honestly threw ourselves a pity party.

Project Pet came out firing on all cylinders. Rather than saying ‘nice try’ and letting us wallow around in self-pity, they put up a fight with our building. Emily and Katherine sent us information to help us try our case. While we fought, another family fell in love with her as well, and though it broke our hearts we knew we couldn’t keep her from a good home just because we were there first.

We were devastated and decided that it just wasn’t meant to be. However, Emily had not given up on us. When she came across Ringo she immediately thought of our situation. We met the little ball of energy with his fosters at the South Street Seaport, and like a scorned lover meeting that special someone, we felt like we could love again. We devised a plan with Project Pet so that we could get approval from our building, and since Ringo was so handsome and such a charmer, they said yes!

Ringo is the sweetest, friendliest, smartest, craziest, most energetic, cuddliest puppy in the world.  He loves his walks, going for rides in the car, and chasing tennis balls. Ringo enjoyed one of the snowiest NYC winters on record, but since then we have moved cross-country to fabulous Las Vegas. Ringo enjoys far more space, hikes, and dog parks so big they would shock a New Yorker’s senses. Project Pet was so good to us-- we have stayed in touch and give regular updates on Ringo and how he has overcome so many of the fears he developed on the mean streets of New York. We are planning a move to a larger home and are contemplating adopting a brother or sister for Ringo. We love Project Pet and wish they were here in Vegas too!


Adopted in October 2010 to yet another adorable young couple and their little dog Peanut! Laine is now the big sister to a little baby boy.

Melissa and I had just got married, moved her five year old Chi-Dach, Peanut, in with us and had just gotten settled when we came across Project Pet online through Petfinder.  Every 3 minutes Melissa was oohing and awing at every four legged friend that popped up onto the screen. Then she came across Laine and Melissa dragged me over to the computer...I knew I was in trouble because the look in Melissa’s eyes meant she wanted this dog, and nothing was going to stop her. On the screen was this gorgeous puppy oozing of happiness even though she was covered in scars and clearly did not have an easy first few years. I knew at that moment that we needed to meet this pup. Melissa borderline stalked Project Pet for a chance to adopt this puppy and Laine was all she talked about for the week before we officially adopted her.

When we met Katherine and Laine, we brought Peanut with us. Peanut would be the final say due to the fact that she had been attacked by a large breed dog when she was younger and has issues with dogs that are bigger than her. We did not want to upset Peanut by bringing a new family member home without making sure that it would not cause her any unnecessary stress. Laine certainly lives life stress free and she could not have been sweeter and more open to meeting Peanut. They went for a nice walk around the city together and then up to Katherine’s apartment to see how they would do off leash. After getting over her ‘larger dog’ jitters and laying out her boundaries, Peanut got comfortable with her new sister and they ran around Katherine’s apartment knocking over end tables and cell phones. We stayed at Katherine’s for literally hours watching the two of them teasing each other and running around like crazy puppies. Melissa was in love the moment she set eyes on Laine and I was in love the moment Laine jumped up and gave me wet sloppy kisses. Melissa and I left there hoping that we would be lucky enough to have Laine join our family. 

Now Peanut and Laine are best friends. Their first night together they ran in circles around the house… and we knew that it was puppy love. They play, sleep, eat, walk, wrestle, race and bark together. When Peanut is hiding away sleeping in a corner, Laine will literally wander around the house looking for her. Laine has really brightened up our home. She is the sweetest and most loyal being that we have ever come across. She always greets you at the door with a smile and a toy in her mouth ready to play at any moment. She carries around her toy ropes and bones like Lionus from Peanuts carries around his blanket. She will stand on her back legs to give you a hug, give you sweet love bites on your nose and ears and when it is time to relax, Laine will literally nuzzle in the nape of your neck like a baby and then serenade you with her light adorable puppy snoring. Everyone that meets her cannot believe she is a rescue dog because her wonderful temperament. She has quickly made friends with all the dogs in the neighborhood. The best part is even people that were scared of her pittie appearance and concerned with the ‘vicious pitbull’ stereotype now stop by to see her and love those adorable crooked ears. Anytime we walk them together, people laugh and smile at our two dogs. Peanut with her ‘hotdog’ body, floppy ears and tiny little face and Laine with her one crooked ear, goofy pit bull smile and athletic build certainly make a comical pair, especially since they are almost the exact same color. 


Adopted July 2010 to a wonderful couple and their two kitties. Sasha lives upstate and just became a big sister to a little baby girl.

For the majority of the time that Dave and I have been together, Dave has been listening to my yearnings to get a dog. I had always grown up with animals; cats, dogs, rabbits, snakes, mice, gerbils, etc. and knew that I wanted a dog in my life. However, school, small apartments, two cats that we rescued early on in our relationship, a number of moves, and irregular schedules with long hours always made it seem like a bad time to adopt a dog. It felt like I was waiting FOREVER. Finally, in June of 2010, we decided to move to the Hudson Valley and buy a house. What this really meant was that we could finally get a dog!

Before we had even closed on a house, before I looked for furniture, and before I had even found a new job, I was on petfinder each day searching for the perfect pup. We had both decided that a rescue was the way to go. We had a few requirements; medium size dog, good with cats, short hair, and not much of a barker. We were hoping for a young dog, but not a puppy. We did not set out to get a pit bull, in fact Dave was somewhat resistant to the idea of getting one, but in my heart I knew that a pit bull would be a perfect match for us. I ooohhed and ahhhed at countless dogs posted online, called a few that didn’t work out (usually because of the cats) and finally came across Sasha. Oh my, what a cutie pie! I saw that underbite and my heart just melted. Despite Dave’s apprehensions about pit bulls, he gave the ok to move forward (how could anyone resist such a sweatheart!) and I filled out an application right away. 

Unfortunately, Sasha was a popular girl and we were informed that she had already received a lot of applications for adoption, one of which was accepted. My heart sank. I had tried not to get too attached. I hadn’t even met Sasha yet, but I couldn’t help being devastated; she had seemed like such a perfect match.

I spent the next few days continuing my search, but somehow it seemed like we had already found, and lost, the ONE.  Then, what a surprise, Sasha’s new home fell though and we were offered a chance to adopt her!!!! We set up a meeting with Sasha and her wonderful foster parents, Alexia and Roddy. We met them all at a dog park downtown. Sasha was a shy girl, but full of energy, gentle, and very smart. We fell in love.

Finally, came the day for Sasha to come to our home. Emily and Roddy drove the hour and a half out of the city to bring Sasha over to our house. If all went well, she would be joining our family that day. She met the cats and ran around in the yard. I could see that Roddy was sad to have to let her go; she is such a special girl.

Sasha has been with us for a little over a year now and we couldn’t be happier. She is such a silly girl and a blast to hang out with. We enjoy taking her for walks around the neighborhood and for longer hikes in the woods, but she is also happy just to hang out and play with her toys in the yard. She has become best buddies with a bull terrier down the street and we take her over for play dates several times a week. She is such a smart girl and recently completed her advanced training class. She knows, leave it, sit, stay, lie down, paw, heel, come and jump (this is her favorite). Despite all of her energy, Sasha can also be quite the couch potato. One of our favorite things to do at the end of the day is to sit down and watch some TV with Sasha cuddled between us on the couch. She is still a shy girl, but is slowly coming out of her shell and learning that all anyone wants to do is give her tons of love and attention!

The other day, discussing the possibility of eventually finding a brother or sister for Sasha, I heard Dave exclaim, “I think we are pit bull people now.” Thank you Emily, Roddy, Alexia, and Project Pet for all of you dedication to Sasha and other rescues like her. Sasha has helped to make our new house a home and has filled our first year here with countless wonderful memories.


Adopted in April 2010 by Emily of Project Pet. Originally found as a stray in the Bronx, Beau now lives with his brother Cody and a foster kittie!

Where should I begin with the story of Beau? As the Director of Project Pet, I fostered pitties constantly, finding them homes and then saving another. In April 2010, I had just adopted out my latest foster pittie, and was down to just my own dog, Cody. At the time, I was working at Animal Care & Control in Manhattan and met tons of needy dogs every day. One day, a terrified dog found in the Bronx named Eddy was too sick to be neutered, and his rescue group planned to put him in boarding. The volunteers who knew and loved Eddy were so upset to think of this terrified, shaking boy spending another minute in a cage. Since I was foster-free at the time, I offered to take Eddy until he was better. On my next day off, Cody and I went to the shelter to bring Eddy home. I went into the ward where he was, and saw him curled up in a ball in the back of the cage. It took him a while to muster up the strength to get up and come to me. Cody, Eddy and I then started on our two hour walk home! The minute we walked in the door, Eddy went straight into the crate. He was so tired from his stressful time at the shelter, and was just waiting for a place to feel safe. It took me about a week to realize that I was so in love with Beau (new name!) that I didn't know how I was going to let him go. It took me about 6 months after that to admit that he was mine forever, that there was just no way I could give him up. 

Beau is THE most sensitive, sweet, affectionate dog I have ever known. He loves all living things, babies, cats, birds, people and dogs and will cry on the street if he can't say 
hello to a fellow canine. Every night we fall asleep nose to nose and every morning he gets a nice ear cleaning from his big brother! I can't imagine my life without Beau in it.  I am so grateful to everyone who played a part in the rescue of this special dog.

It breaks my heart beyond anything I could ever put into words, that there are dogs like Beau sitting in shelters across the country right now who are so desperate for a loving home, and who are so amazing. These hidden gems need a second chance, and I urge everyone to go and adopt these wonderful dogs... especially the pitties! You haven't lived until you have taken a nap with a pit!


Adopted February, 2010 to a wonderful family in Brooklyn! Story written by her 11 year old buddy!

After our first rescue Momo died, my family and I decided that we should live without a dog for a while. Momo was a dog that my parents got a year before I was born. She died right after my birthday and right before Christmas in 2009. I was 11. She looked just like Nina but was fragile and smaller. She had some emotional baggage but was super-friendly to people. She was the dog that I grew up with. I was her baby. She was so much to us and we loved her so much that we thought it would be next to impossible to replace her.

We didn’t last a month. Within a month we went to dozens of websites, looking for a brown, red-nose pit-bull that is female and around 35 pounds. We kept emailing for information but nobody would get back to us. By around the fifth night we were sending multiple emails a night, just hoping that one would come back with an answer. One night my parents were looking at the Project Pet website while I was in bed when I got up to go to the bathroom. After I finished I went to get a drink and looked over my parents’ shoulders. There on the screen was Nina.

“That’s the one,” I said pointing at Nina’s cute photo on the screen. That night, my parents sent an e-mail to Project Pet with high hopes.

It was very fast. It only took 2 days for Emily to get back to us about Nina. Nina was the first dog e-mail that go back to us and we immediately filled out the application required by Project Pet. We decided on a date to meet Nina and her foster parents, January 29, 2010.

It’s January 29, 2010 and we go to Manhattan to meet Nina and her foster parents. Her foster parents are really nice. Nina was really energetic and playful and we fell in love. We talked about her the whole train ride home. We thought that we were going to have a dog. On a cold night in late January about a month after we said we weren’t going to get a dog for a while, we’re on the verge of getting a dog.

The meeting goes perfectly and it’s time for the house check and Nina to become our dog. The date is set for February 3, my dad’s birthday. Emily and Nina’s foster family came and I couldn’t wait. I wondered what Nina’ reaction to living with us would be. Would she like it in our house? Was she potty trained well enough? It was kind of weird but I couldn’t wait to start walking a dog in the morning again. (Why would I wait to do a chore again?) It was quite possibly the happiest day of 2010 for me. The house check went fine and by the end of the night Nina was mine. I finally had the dog that I could run around with, watch TV with and practice soccer moves against.

Now I always walk her every morning. She loves to play and loves the dog-run. She is really nice and is friends with a one year old baby from down the hall. She is bathed with toys and is spoiled rotten.

Overall it was only a month without a dog but it felt like a decade to me. Nina is an athletic, uncoordinated, cute, cuddly, entertaining puppy. She has huge paws and a gigantic head. She is eager to please, loves the dog run, and hates her cage. She is 45 pounds and she is like a sister to me. She isn’t a Momo replacement, but she is just Nina.


Adopted January 2010, happily living in CT with 3 cats. Sake was found abandoned in the lobby of a building in the Bronx after being hit by a car. She was almost euthanized because of her injury.

Our adoption story of how we found Sake started months before we actually took her home on January 10th 2010.  My wife had planted the seed about getting a dog around the fall of ’09 but I wasn’t interested in having another responsibility in our already too busy lives.  I said no way.  We had adopted two retired racing Greyhounds when our kids were small and I was well aware of what was involved in bringing home a new dog.  We are both softies for “underdogs” so to speak and through watching TV shows about Pit Bulls, we became drawn to the breed and their horrible plight and misrepresentation.  One night after watching an episode of “Underdog To Wonderdog” about a Pit Bull who had been treated so poorly and how she had gotten a second chance and rebounded so well with the help of a loving family, we knew what kind of dog we were going to get.  The funny things was… I became the one who was on a mission now to save a Pit Bull and get a dog!

Right after New Years, we started searching the internet and found Sake’s picture on Petfinder.  That picture and her story hooked us and we contacted Project Pet. I guess it was about a week after contacting Project Pet and here we were driving 3 hours to NYC from our home in CT to ride home with a Pit Bull Terrier we knew virtually nothing about! Tell that to your friends and family members and see what looks and responses you get. Sake had been found abandoned in a building with injuries to her right hind leg. She was brought to a kill shelter and would have been put down if it weren’t for Project Pet. Sake got kennel cough that developed into pneumonia and nearly died. She was lucky she met Emily and her foster dad Matt who nursed her back to health.

Sake came home with us that Sunday afternoon and has been nothing but the opposite of what the media portrays these dogs as. She took to us almost immediately and has been our constant companion ever since. We feel very fortunate that her foster dad Matt had her before we got her because she was really well adjusted. We have two cats that thought their world ended that day. We didn’t see them very much except for when they flew out the back door to go in or out. We decided to rescue a kitten with the hope it might help the other cats adjust and in February we got Fender, an 8 month old kitten from the Providence Animal Control Center. From the moment I brought that kitten home, Fender and Sake became best friends. They played together and slept together and Fender helped the other two cats realize that Sake was cool and wasn’t going to kill them!

Since we brought Sake home in January, she has learned to do so many things. She learned to sit, stay, lie down and a few other dog tricks within a few weeks. She loves to ride in the car and take walks. She loves to have her belly rubbed and give an unlimited amount of her dog kisses! She is also a good sibling to her brother cats. We don’t recommend this to everyone but Sake is very obedient and has learned to be outside in our yard without a leash. We live on 2 ½ acres in the woods and watching her run free and play ball in our yard is a proud feeling for us. She knows how good she has it and we know how lucky we are for finding her. This didn’t happen by luck. We worked hard with her to make her listen to us and stay close by. But we now have a well behaved, good mannered pit bull who people are in awe of.

We had a fairly large get together for Easter and another for my daughter’s graduation. Sake was the star on both days. Many of our friends and family who thought we had lost our minds got to see what we knew. She played ball with everyone and ran around loose in the yard which blows people away. In our little part of CT, we’re trying to change people’s perception about pit bulls. One of the best things we’ve done in our recent memory was to decide to adopt a pit bull. 

I once heard a woman on TV say that “Pit Bulls aren’t monsters, they are victims”. This has become my message whenever someone wants to talk about our pit bull Sake. We both wish we could do more to help these wonderful animals and help spread the word to people that they are best breed of dog you could call your companion. We are lucky to know Emily Tanen of Project Pet and Dr. Matt Cooper who saved Sake and fostered her. It’s funny how if you let life guide you instead of trying to control it, the wonderful things that can happen and the wonderful people you meet along the way.


Rescued from NYC's kill shelter. Stella was fostered for a short amount of time, until she was adopted in January 2010. She now lives with a wonderful family and their young daughter, Emily.

Our daughter had been asking us for a dog for christmas. We had just moved into our house so we thought that maybe it would be a good time to get an addition to our family. I am a big animal lover, growing up with all different kind of pets from birds, hamster, cats, dogs guinea pigs and more. I was all for getting a dog, my boyfriend however at first was not as excited as I was. He said I wont walk it or let it on the furniture, well that all changed once we brought our Stella home. I was looking all over the internet at different sites to find the perfect dog for our family. When I came across Stella I was in love and I knew she was the one. I knew that my boyfriend Ryan would fall in love with Stella when he saw her picture, and that is exactly what happened. When he saw her picture he melted. I set up a time and place for us to meet Stella for after christmas. Christmas morning our daughter Emily, woke up to find a picture of Stella with toys and food and a letter from Santa saying that he had this dog that needed a loving home. A few days later we went to meet her. There she was in her cute pink sweater wagging her tail like crazy. Emily immediately fell in love. I was a little unsure at first since Stella was a pit bull. When I met her I realized that I had it all wrong about pit bulls. It is all how they are raised. She is the sweetest thing ever. We couldn't be happier with her. I think sometimes she forgets she is a dog. She sleeps in bed every night with Emily. She follows me around everywhere I go. She loves to go for walks and in the car with us. In the summer she comes on the boat with us and loves it.  She is one spoiled dog :) I am so happy that we found her, she makes our family complete. I cant wait to get her a friend. 


Story coming soon!

Simon Whiteowl the Great

Adopted November 2009. Living in Syracuse, NY with sister Penny, and two awesome parents. Simon was brought into the city kill shelter by his previous owner, almost dead. He has huge bite marks, was unconscious and bleeding to death. The shelter rushed him to the emergency hospital where his life was saved. Then, Project Pet put him in a wonderful foster home until he was adopted! 

We each grew up with dogs in our family and each missed our family dogs when we went away to college. Old age claimed our old pals.  The demands of college and graduate school did not allow us to have a dog and we waited until we were ready. Our first wedding anniversary came around and the final day of Stacey’s bar exam: it was the day we brought home our Penny. We found Penny on Petfinder.com. We knew this wild, energetic, crazy, grumpy girl was ours from the start: half pit, half vizsla. Her personality is a reflection of both of us. Our lives have never been the same since Penny became part of our family. Penny turned Long Island City into a neighborhood and introduced us to human friends through a local dog park that have withstood both time and distance. Penny did so much for us and we wanted to do something for her. We brought her daily to the dog park in our Long Island City neighborhood and Penny adapted well to our daily family runs and apartment living. After a long day of work it was soothing to watch dogs play and be a part of their game sometimes. 

Jobs, family, and yearning for more green space brought us upstate to Syracuse. We trained for the NYC Marathon with Penny. She is serious about her runs: they are our family pack activity. We took Penny hiking in the Adirondacks. Penny visited all her grandparents’ homes and ran off leash on their farms, frolicking in the fields, racing through the vineyards, and dashing madly around the ponds.  

It was not long before we were in a position to buy a house. The night we closed on the house we came home and started talking about a playmate for Penny. We had the space and Penny LOVES other dogs. At first, we were thinking of getting a pure breed dog and even went to see pups at a breeder. We did not walk away with a puppy that day because we were two weeks away from running the NYC Marathon and could not meet the time demands for a puppy at that point. Something also made us feel wrong about the whole pure bread experience. The mother dog had howled like we were taking her heart and soul at the breeder when her puppy came over to us.  We needed a puppy who needed us.   

We turned to Petfinder again.  We did not see what we were looking for in the Syracuse area, so we put in our old Long Island City Zip Code.  We saw a picture of a little injured pit/lab mix. Something about his injuries, sweet face, and the pictures of him licking Emily melted us enough to send an e-mail. We figured someone that cute was probably already adopted. He was not though. We filled out the application, but still had 10 days to go before we would be in the City and could pick him up. Time passed and no one had come forward that could provide Simon Whiteowl a home. 

It was not long before the weekend of the Marathon had arrived. We went to see Simon the day before the Marathon. Seeing him sealed the deal for us. Each step of the Marathon was one step closer to getting our new puppy. We picked him up the day after the Marathon: both of us sore and hardly able to walk.   

At first, Penny was very suspicious of who is this little guy taking up her space in the car. The car ride was fairly uneventful however, sprinkled with pee breaks about every one to two hours resulting in a trip of around six hours to get home.  When we got to our home we walked Simon around our yard with Penny and showed him the boundaries. We then brought him in and Penny raced down to her play room. Simon ran in the house, but stood at the top of the stairs crying. We carried him down. Penny was thrilled to share her toys and play with the little guy. Her entire body was wagging with joy at her new found playmate. 

We picked Simon up a crate to match his big sister’s crate and placed them side by side. We also picked up a huge dog bed shaped like a biscuit that both dogs can sleep on. They sleep mainly in their crates now, but both come up on our bed for snuggle time on weekend mornings. Simon has figured out the stairs. He is not a fan of the cold, but is okay when he gets in a coat. For now, he is growing like a weed and getting his big sister’s hand me downs. He is about 26 lbs now. He outgrew his first coat which now resembles a muscle shirt on his quickly growing torso. 

Penny was sick with a virus in mid-November.  She was so sick we took her to the emergency vet in the middle of the night.  She is fully recuperated now, but little Simon snuggled with Penny to help keep her warm when she was sick. He seemed to know Penny was not well. Penny now mothers Simon a little by cleaning him paying particular attention to his teeth, jowls, and head. Thanks to Penny he is a clean little boy.  They also love to play tug of war against each other, we are sure that it will be a fairer match in a few months. 

 Simon and Penny are also going to K-9 Kamp twice a week together. Recently they had their pictures taken with Santa to raise money for the local animal shelter.  Frequently when we pick them up after a long hard day at camp they are curled up on the couch together: the staff are amazed and say they must get along great at home. Penny is the Queen still of our home: her kingdom. She can be grumpy and is stingy with her kisses.  Simon is a great contrast! The tail thumping starts from the first second in the morning. The kisses are endless.  He is a happy, friendly little guy and growing up to be a great big boy.  We are thrilled to have our little snuggle monkey and looking forward to many years with him.


Adopted September 2009, currently living in North Caroline with her kittie sibling and loving mom! Jasmine was surrendered by her previous owners to NYC's kill shelter in the middle of the night. She said in the back of her cage, so down and out. She was rescued day's before going on the euth list for contracting kennel cough. 

I adopted Jasmine, an 8 month old pittie mix in September 2009. She is our third rescue animal and has completed our family. Jasmine was dropped off at the New York City Animal Care & Control in the middle of the night with no information on her past. She did not have much time left and was lucky enough to be rescued and go into a foster home. Today, Jasmine is a healthy, high energy, outgoing and happy dog. She is a giant mush. Jasmine is always in the mood cuddle, play and is the first to greet you at the door with her tail going a mile a minute.

This is how our Jasmine came to complete our family: One day at the dog park and we started talking to someone who just rescued their dog and telling us happy they
 are. My boyfriend at the time, and I thought about getting a second dog for a while but we had some concerns.  We live in a small one bedroom apartment and also have a cat. Our dog Louie and cat Chinel are best friends and we were worried about making a wave in the house, so we put off getting a second dog. At same time we also thought a second dog would help Louie. We moved from South Carolina where Lou grew up, to New York City and she went from an outgoing dog to a shy nervous dog when we went for walks, and wouldn’t play at the dog park.  In SC the dog park was one of her favorite places.  We felt another dog may boost Louie’s confidence.  Both Louie and Chinel are shelter animals and we felt we could help another shelter dog and help Louie at the same time.  We would start looking and if we found a fit then we would adopt. We met Jasmine two days later. Jasmine’s foster mom bought her over to meet our family. We knew once Jazzy walked in she was our girl. We bought her home the next night.  Jasmine got along with Louie and Chinel right away but had some trouble adjusting to new home. Jasmine was as happy as can be when were all together but as soon we started to get ready to leave the apartment Jasmine would start display nervous behaviors and while we were gone she would bark and cry until we came back. We did some research and also was referred to a dog behaviorist: Jasmine had separation anxiety.  We were given some things to work on with her while we were home and special toys and treats for her to have while we were out.  We also enrolled her in puppy preschool and found an amazing dog walker. After some hard work and consistency in a routine Jasmine realized that we always came home for her. Now Jasmine goes right into her crate and lays down and looks so cozy when we leave. Her nervous behaviors are gone and has became a well rounded adjusted happy dog.  Our dog Louie came out of her shell too and became that outgoing dog we once knew. Seeing all this success is what makes Jasmine and any shelter dog worth it!! We strongly believe you should never pay for a dog or cat. There are so many dogs and cats that need loving homes and so many wonderful loving dogs like Jasmine that are over looked.