Anyone who has known or lived with a pit bull is aware of what gentle and devoted dogs they are. Smart, friendly, loyal, playful, good with kids and other animals, they make ideal pets. Unfortunately, the pit bull - which is actually a catchall name for several different breeds, such as the American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, and Bull Terrier - also has the worst reputation in all of dogdom. It's a bad rep caused by bad owners who are ignorant of the breed's dominant traits and training requirements...or just plain ignorant (yeah, we're talking about you, Michael Vick).

    Because of the poor perception of the kind, pit bulls comprise the greatest part of animal shelter populations and are put down in the largest numbers. A source of frustration and grief to many animal lovers, there are ways to help. Take, for instance, tattooist Brandon Bond, of Atlanta's All Or Nothing Tattoo, who has fostered and helped place over 200 homeless animals, primarily pit bulls. Now, under the auspices of All Or Nothing Pit Bull Rescue, Bond and his crew have teamed up with Atlanta Animal Rescue Friends (AARF) to bring even more attention to the plight of so many shelter animals.

    In addition to using his huge network of friends and fans to place pit bulls in danger of being euthanized into good homes, Bond has thrown his full support behind the AARF 2008 Rescue Tails Calendar. In fact, the cover features two of Brandon's own (rescued) dogs, Cain and Medusa. The calendar, signed by Brandon, is available for purchase at, with 100% of the proceeds going to Atlanta Animal rescue Friends.

    There are many ways you can help save a pit bull (or other animal) doomed for extinction. Donate your time or money to a local shelter, utilize your phone and email list to let area residents know of pets in desperate need and, most importantly don't become part of the problem. Don't breed your dog or buy from dog breeders-adopt! And spay/neuter your animals as soon as they are old enough. Here's an interesting stat courtesy of All Or Nothing Pit Bull Rescue: If you breed your dog just once and the resulting puppies are bred, and their are puppies bred, and so on, within 6 years you will be responsible for having put 67,000 dogs in the world! Wouldn't you rather have saved 6 or 7 dogs from a needless death?