Tag Archives: pitbull characteristics

Hartley, My Heart.

11 Feb
My Heart.

My Heart.

I have loved animals all of my life. I always loved my family dogs, I loved horses and horseback riding as a kid and I always wanted to work with dogs when I grew up. Everything I thought I knew about loving dogs all changed when I saw Hartley’s face on Petfinder in February of 2009. I knew I HAD to have this dog. I was 21 years old and living on my own. This was going to be MY first dog. I filled out my adoption papers 20 minutes before someone else tried to adopt him. It was meant to be.
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Hartley was a 12 week old Lab-Mix puppy. My vet declared right away that he was probably a Pitbull-mix. That was fine with me, I’d been in love with Pitbulls for the past 5 or so years. No wonder I fell so hard for his picture.

So Snuggly.

So Snuggly.

Hartley and I instantly fell in love. I was 21 and had a pretty busy lifestyle so I simply brought Hartley with me. Everywhere. Hartley came to friends houses with me, Hartley came to my parents houses with me (even though he wasn’t invited). Hartley came grocery shopping with me or to school with me if I had a short day. He loved being in the car and I loved that I could walk him during my breaks. Hartley and I spent our time camping, at the cabin, or hiking. I was so much more active than I’d ever been before. We even played outside at night which would have scared me before.

Can I come with?

Can I come with?

Before I had Hartley I used to have terrible sleeping problems. I was always scared at night and I could never just FALL ASLEEP. When Hartley was about 7 months old I stopped making him sleep in his crate and let him sleep in bed with me. Every night he slept in the crook of my legs with his head on my legs. Suddenly I wasn’t afraid anymore. I listened to, and felt, him breathing and I fell asleep.

My life changed when I brought little Hartley home. I loved that I was responsible for his life. I loved coming home after work because that was Hartley and Chelsea time. I loved that he made me active and I loved that, with Hartley, winter was fun. I couldn’t just sit indoors anymore.. Hartley needed to be exercised. I learned that if I bundled up, playing in the snow was actually fun.
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My dad was always so amazed by Hartley’s attachment to me. He used to say that Hartley orbited around me. Even off leash he rarely went more than 50 yards from me. He would chase me on the four-wheeler no matter where I went.

Me and My Baby

Me and My Baby

This was the first time in my life that I had experienced THIS kind of love and devotion. He was my whole life, my whole heart and soul. Nothing made me happier than Hartley did. And he also made me fall in love with Pitbulls even more. The love and devotion that this little Pitbull gave me was more than I ever could have dreamed of. He was my best friend and the love of my life.
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One year after I brought little Hartley home and into my life he got really sick. He was throwing up and very lethargic. It turned out that he had ingested rope from a rope toy, and the next day he died in surgery. His intestines were completely shredded and there was nothing they could do to save him. He was in so much more pain than I ever knew. The night before he died he didn’t act like he was in pain. He just wanted to be with me. I didn’t even say goodbye. I was so relieved that he was going in to surgery because I was convinced it would help him. I didn’t get to say goodbye until after he had died. He would have done anything for me and I completely failed him.

Hartley died 3 years ago and I still can’t believe he’s gone. His death wrecked me. I still can’t think about the last couple of days that I had with him without crying.

I love Mylo and Chase with all of my heart but Hartley will always be MY HEART. Hartley changed my life and opened my eyes to real undying devotion. He gave me my strong passion for dogs and gave me an unwavering commitment to Pitbulls.

I’m now overly cautious with my dogs, and I worry ALL the time. I don’t want to ever go through that pain again. Saying goodbye to his lifeless body was the worst moment of my entire life. But, I am thankful that I had one year with Hartley, my angel, and I will always have unwavering affection for the dogs in my life, because Hartley would want me to.

I thank Hartley for showing me what is important in life. He died three years ago yesterday, so this post is for him.
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Harltey, I hope you’re having fun over the rainbow bridge. I miss you every day. I’m sorry we didn’t get more time together, but thank you for sending me Mylo and Chase and all of my fosters to bring me some comfort, and some more love.

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So worth it. Check out Hank now.

14 Nov

When Hank got adopted I knew it was supposed to make me happy, and yet finding Hank’s forever home broke my heart.  Hank is a perpetually happy-go-lucky pitbull who completely stole my heart with his sweet face and loving attitude.  I never wanted to let him go.

Hank is a classic example of how amazing this breed is.  He has all of the qualities that make me love pitbulls so much.  He’s carefree, he gets along with people and other dogs, he has a mellow demeanor, he loves to snuggle, and he loves to be loved.  Because of this I was incredibly heavy-hearted when I dropped him off with his new mom.  A few weeks later I still miss Hank VERY much, but I have a new foster who I love, and I am here to tell you that getting updates about your previous foster makes everything SO worth it.

Here are some Hanky Panky Updates.

Hank met a horse for the first time.

Hank meeting his new horse friend.

Hank and his new pittie sister, Diamond, are so in love.  They wrestle all day, and then cuddle together all night.  His new owner says Diamond even sleeps next to Hank’s crate whenever he has to be in it.

True love.

Hank is spoiled with new collars, new dog beds, new toys, car rides, and walks.

Handsome man.

He even got a Halloween costume, talk about being part of the family.

He looks so happy..

I’m SO happy that I get to see Hank with his new owner and know that he is ok.  I still miss him every day, but seeing how happy he is melts my heart.  This is why we fosters do it.

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