The Animal Planet’s show “Pit Bulls and Parolees” was scheduled to shoot an episode on July 28th at the women’s prison in Grants NM about the rescue program, “Heeling Hearts.” I just received word today that the Animal Planet canceled because they feel that filming such programs in a women’s prison will not draw as many viewers as the same type of program in a men’s prison.
The rescue program is called “Heeling Hearts” and is a combination of effort between PB&J, a 501(c)3 organization which helps troubled women in New Mexico along with the Grants County Shelter. Heeling Hearts rescues dogs from the local shelter and places them in the loving care and guidance of the women in the Grants prison. The women then care and nurture the dogs – which just as themselves come from an abusive background – show them how to love and trust once again. Upon completion of a six to nine week training program, the dog is then tested – and almost always passes – their AKC CGC test. The CGC (Canine Good Citizenship) test has 10 standard commands that dog must pass, as well as being socially acceptable.
My two dogs are rescues from this very same program. They are a mother-son duo, with the son being a “lethal white.” They are Australian Shepherds, and he is a product of being born from a merle-to-merle breeding. He is completely deaf and blind in one eye. I have trained him with touch commands and hand signals. I also run the mama dog in agility.
To read more about my two dogs, their history and stay at the prison, please click here which will take you to my “Doggie Bloggie” where I tell their story. Additionally, here is my posting on Heeling Hearts.
I am posting this to tell Animal Planet SHAME ON YOU for considering your number of viewers before the feelings of the women in this prison, and being able to promote adoption of the dogs within this program. A large percentage of the women in this program come from abuse and addiction. They have been raised and believed that they were nothing. This rescue program has taught them how to love once again. To gain self-confidence in a world where they have been told their entire lives that they were nothing – would never amount to anything. These women were looking so forward to being filmed and sharing what they are now contributing back to society under the shadow of their crimes.
And all you care about are the number of viewers. Apparently the mens prison has more violent criminals, thus drawing more attention to your show. So that’s what you care about? Filming a larger quantity of violent criminals rather than bringing some amount of joy and hope for the women who give everything they have to help pay back their debt to society? To learn to love so when they are released they may have a more loving and supportive relationship with their own children?
Shame on you, Animal Planet and “Pit Bulls and Parolees.”
Here are a few pictures of my two dogs – rescued through this very same program that Animal Planet snubbed. They are the best things that have ever happened to me.