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MHRHS Sponsors Screening of Beyond the Myth, a New Documentary about Pit Bulls

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Beyond the Myth at HVCC

A New Documentary about Pit Bulls and Breed Specific Legislation

Beyond the MythThe Mohawk and Hudson River Humane Society (MHRHS) along with co-sponsor, the Hudson Valley Community College (HVCC) Animal Outreach Club is hosting a community screening of Beyond the Myth, a first of its kind documentary that takes viewers through Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) in four major US cities.  The event will take place in HVCC’s Bulmer Auditorium on Monday March 26th at 7 pm. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased through a link on their website. (

Pit bulls are the focus of this new wave of laws and the film demonstrates the factors that contribute to the public’s fear of the breed.  This banning of dogs is done mostly by their physical description—short, stocky dogs with a large head are assumed to be pit bulls and dangerous.  The film claims BSL is a legalized form of profiling, and it is currently legal in 39 states.  Any breed can be its next victim.

“It is important to create teachable moments about pit bull type dogs, to spread the word about the true nature of the breed.  Events like this start a dialogue about the huge problem the breed is currently facing in the US,” says Nancy Haynes, Animal Welfare Manager of MHRHS.

“It’s discrimination, it’s been proven to be completely ineffective, and it’s just plain wrong. We want the community to be educated about this, and to start talking about it. We want people to share the knowledge they gain with others and start a community-wide dialogue about the true nature of the breed, and how we can help,” relates Haynes.

The MHRHS has a very active Save-a-Bull program that was the recipient of a $25K Pepsi Refresh grant. The money from the grant has afforded the shelter to fund free-of-charge obedience classes for pit bulls and pit bull mixes in the community. The program also provides low-cost spay and neutering services for low-income pit bull owners and two off-site adoption clinics a month. The organization has appeared on local news and radio programs to advertise the work they have been doing to create a positive image for the breed.

More than half of the dogs that enter the shelter are pit bulls and they tend to take twice as long to adopt as other breeds. The MHRHS hopes the event will offer people who are potential adopters to be free from being nervous or unsure about the breed and realize that pit bulls are just like any other dog.

Attendees will have access to informational tables in the lobby before show time. Guests can visit with organizations like Out of the Pits, Save-a-Bull and the Pit Bull Princess. Several pit bulls will be in attendance for guests to meet, such as the former Michael Vick dog, Jhumpa Jones, and Out of the Pits will feature two of their certified therapy dogs, Grace and Oliver.

“We hope that the screening will start a dialogue about the breed and the plight they’re currently facing.  That viewers leave talking about the film and the things they learned, and that the next day they will tell their co-workers, friends, and family as well.  For every person who learns about the true nature of the breed, that is one person closer to changing the overall view of the breed.  Pit bulls are just dogs; they are just like any other dog.  We want people to learn and share that knowledge!”

For additional information about the film, visit

Nicole M. Arciello Berhaupt is an Assistant Editor for The Free George.

The Free George is the online magazine and visitors’ guide of Upstate NY, covering things from Albany to Lake Placid, including Saratoga, the Lake George region and the Adirondacks. Check out our City Blogs section for our extended coverage areas as well.

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