The Special Place Animals Have in my Life


Anyone who knows me knows that I am an animal lover, and dogs have a special place in my heart, especially Pit Bulls. We have three pits at home, and while it took some time and convincing before I agreed to allow my son to get one, I now realize what gentle and caring dogs they are in spite of the bad reputation they have. I realize the statistics show that pits have the highest rate of attacks, but I fully trust ours and have no reservations having three of them in my home. They are very loyal and protective, but also sweet and loving and are some of the best dogs I’ve ever had.

Becca Benz's dogs! Becca Benz's dogs!

One of our pits is a rescue dog who was fought and his head is pretty chewed up, but he is the sweetest dog. In spite of weighing 70 pounds he still thinks he’s a lap dog and loves nothing more than to jump up and curl up in our lap and give us lots of slobbery kisses!

The dogs live with my oldest son in another state so I don’t get to see them very often, which is touch because I really miss my babies. Every time I see someone walking a dog I want to ask if I can pet their dog. I need to find a shelter here to volunteer at so I get my doggie fix!

It always amazes me how intuitive dogs are. There were times when I was feeling down and the dogs knew it and would be by my side more than usual like they could sense that I needed them. I’ve always said that dogs are by far the best form of therapy, and so much cheaper than going to a shrink!

Becca Benz's dogs!

My youngest son and I volunteered for six years at a rescue, which was such a rewarding experience but was also difficult in many ways. We spent a lot of time in the quarantine area where there were so many pit bulls who had been fought. It was horrible to see the damage that some of these dogs had endured, and the worst part was knowing it was intentional. I have a difficult time understanding how anyone could abuse an animal, and it’s sickening to realize how prevalent dog fighting is. But even after having been fought most pits were still sweet and loving and maintained their gentle demeanor. It was heartbreaking how many pits were put down even though they would have been a great pet for the right family, but unfortunately they never got the opportunity.

Thankfully more and more shelters are going to a “No-Kill” policy, but there are still too many shelters which are unable to adapt that policy because of funding issues and over-crowding. Which is precisely why it’s so important to get your pets spayed or neutered so that they don’t continue to breed and produce unwanted litters of animals which end up being taken to shelters, or even worse left on some back road where they suffer a miserable death.

It was very encouraging to hear that beginning this year the FBI has now bumped up Animal Cruelty charges to a felony level, which means that it is now categorized the same way as a homicide or arson. This is important not only for protection of the animals, but also because according to a recent study by the New York State Humane Association, as many as 70% of people convicted of violent crimes have some history of animal cruelty. So his will help save the lives if not only animals but people too.


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