There is no doubt pit bulls have a bad rap in today’s society. But there is one woman and a group of volunteers who are on a mission to change that image.
Deirdre “Little Darling” Franklin founded Pinups for Pitbulls – a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization dedicated to raising money for rescuing and providing outreach education and public awareness about the breed.
Along with over 50 other women throughout the U.S., Little Darling sponsors an annual calendar, complete with pit bull loving owners posing in the charmingly teasing pinup style of girlie images from the 1940′s and 1950′s. The recently released 2011 calendar theme is “A Media Circus” referencing the decidedly biased messages against pit bulls in contemporary media. Each month is represented with a backdrop of scenery right out of a 1930′s traveling circus.
In the brief five years Pinups for Pitbulls has been in existence, they have raised thousands of dollars and provided anti-BSL (breed-specific legislation) education. The money goes to rescuing individual pit bulls, rescue groups involved with pit bulls, and community education like the upcoming seminar November 14 in Collingswood, N.J., featuring Don Cleary of the National Canine Research Council and Drayton Michaels, CTC from PitBullGuru.com.
Little Darling was delighted last year when contacted by the producers of Animal Planet’s Pit Boss starring Shorty Rossi. Pinups for Pitbulls was featured in the show’s premiere episode. Rossi’s assignment was to get pit bull, Geisha, to pose with Little Darling. That photo ended up in the 2010 calendar.
A novel approach to a feared topic has proven to be a successful way to communicate the truth about pit bulls. The expression “punish the deed, not the breed” says it all. Lest you think Little Darling is a kook with an exhibitionist streak — think again.
In an interview Deirdre told me she plans on completing law school. No, she won’t undergo laser removal of her tattoos and join a prestigious law firm defending corporate greed or dog-fighting criminals:
“I want to better understand the law so I can draft animal welfare legislation in defense of America’s most maligned canine breed – the pit bull,” she said.
Do you feel inspired yet? Fear not — if you’re interested in being featured in next year’s calendar, there is an annual contest everyone is invited to enter. Check out the website for a peep show of calendars past and other photo-op events!
Women from around the globe are sending photos of themselves in pinup girl poses with the goal of making it into the next Pinups for Pitbulls calendar. Good clean fun for a great cause!
Cover of 2011 calendar with permission of Pinups for Pitbulls.