Lola Needs a Home

Lola Needs a Home of Her Own
Lola is in Canada, and needs a home of her own…

Hey, have you been looking for a super deluxe, pre spoiled, ready to install lapdog v. 2.0? One with most of the bugs already worked out? One that’s been field tested and approved for day to day family snuggling and cookie eating?

Then check out this little cutie pie from over on French Bulldog Village

Admit it – this is the dog you’ve been waiting for.  The sweet, gentle, people-loving Frenchie who will cuddle up with you on the couch while you eat popcorn and watch movies, read a good book, or take a nap.  Who knows, maybe she’s a sports fan?  She loves her people, so whatever you like to do will be just fine with her, as long as it isn’t too athletic.  Lola is a friendly and outgoing girl who likes children, other dogs, and pretty much everyone she meets. She would, however, prefer to be your only furry resident; at her age, she doesn’t want or need to be pushed aside by the younger crowd. A home with one or two good natured dogs would probably be just fine.

Lola is one of the luckier Frenchies on the French Bulldog Bus. Until now, she had a loving home.  Her owner wishes she could stay, but he has to move where pets are not allowed, so sweet Lola needs to find a retirement home of her own.

It’s tough to be uprooted when you’re an older girl, but Lola’s taking it like a champ.   Her sweet personality keeps shining through. There’s a little grey around her muzzle but her heart is pure Frenchie gold.  Lola’s always been a good girl and she’s in good health.  Well, maybe a little “middle-aged spread,” but nothing abnormal.  She does take thyroid pills every day but it’s a very inexpensive medication, and she takes her pills without any fuss. She’s up to date on her veterinary care.  Lola has been well cared for all her life, and she has no known traumas or illnesses. She’s just, like the rest of us, getting up there in years.

Lola has excellent manners, with crate training and house training under her belt.  She has the ability to slip into your household and settle down as comfortably as if she’s always lived there.

Lola needs a loving forever home to put her Frenchie feet up and nap next to a nice warm human being. She’s a lovely brindle girl and very photogenic and would be delighted to pose with you on your next set of holiday cards. Don’t you need a cuddly Frenchie to snuggle with?  Lola is waiting for you!

Come on, you know you have room for one more Frenchie on your lap. Lola is a little old lady who just wants a chance to live out her life in a peaceful, loving home. If you’re that home, then go on over to the French Bulldog Village and fill out an application form.

Here are Lola’s basic stats (note that she’s in Canada, and can’t be shipped):

Location: Castleton, Ontario, Canada
Email: Lola
Age: 11 years
Gender: Spayed female
Weight: 28 pounds
Color: Brindle
Cost to Acquire: $250.00 to be donated to rescue
Shipping: No

(Note: Lola is not mine, and I have no say in her placement or adoption. To inquire about Lola, please use the links I’ve provided)

Gina Price's victims have their say in court

I’ve written before about the responsibility puppy buyers have to do their homework before shelling cash for a puppy they’re not even sure exists. In spite of this, it’s impossible not to feel for the people who’ve been victimized by puppy brokers like Gina Price.

Over the last week, some of Price’s victims had a chance to tell the court about their experiences with the puppies they bought from Rebel Ridge.

Jere Judd wanted an American-born English bulldog puppy he could register and one day breed.

He said he got an imported pooch so diseased it had to be euthanized two months later.

Tony Diliberto wanted a “Tennessee born and bred,” healthy bulldog for a pet.

He said he got an ailing import and $800 in veterinarian bills.

Michelle Cates said she wanted a snow-white bulldog that would be a mirror image of the mascot of her favorite college football team, the University of Georgia Bulldogs.

She said she got a spotted import beset with health problems and a slew of excuses for missing paperwork.

In the best tradition of scumbag puppy sellers everywhere, Price had the standard ‘send me the dog, and I’ll kill it and give you your money back’ guarantee. I call that the ‘dead dog clause’. It’s a get out of jail free card for sellers, because what loving owner is going to ship a sick puppy across the country to a certain death?

Diliberto said Price also assured him that his $1,200 payment was buying a purebred sired at her kennel. Within days, he learned the dog was an import with serious medical maladies, he testified. Diliberto said he contacted Price.

“She said, ‘If you want, you can ship me the dead dog, and I’ll send you another one,’ ” Diliberto said. “I said, ‘That’s sick. The dog’s not dead.’ She then said, ‘Send me the live dog, and I’ll put it down (euthanize it) and send you another.’ I realized then I wasn’t dealing with a rational, sane human being.”

Price’s attorney, clearly grasping at straws, presents this ‘guarantee’ as normal and reasonable. The grieving owner not only disagrees, but points out a simple fact – you can’t ship a dog without a health clearance, and you can’t ship a dead dog at all.

..defense attorney Richard Spivey noted that Price listed on her Web site a “health guarantee” that promises a replacement dog if the buyer ships to her the carcass of a bulldog that dies from poor health.

“Did you do that?” Spivey asked.

“Are you kidding?” an angry Diliberto replied. “You can’t ship a dead dog, by the way.”

Read the rest here on KnoxNews.Com

Other puppy buyers complained about odd delivery methods, and Price’s even odder instructions to them.

Norred told jurors Thursday that he grew suspicious of the deal when the dog arrived at the agreed-upon delivery site in the lap of a man, sans a cage or collar or anything else.

“I’m not an idiot, but something wasn’t right,” Norred said. “They handed me the dog like this (turning up the palms of his hands and reaching out his arms).”

When Norred asked how he was supposed to transport the dog, the woman delivering the dog “said use a seat belt.”

“I tried. I did,” Norred said as jurors and courtroom spectators began laughing. “The dog was looking at me like, ‘OK, you are an idiot.’ I drove home, holding the dog, praying.”

What wasn’t quite as funny was the scene that greeted Norred after his pup ate its first meal.

As soon as he arrived home, he dished out food for the scrawny pooch and left it to dine alone. When he returned, he found an empty food bowl and a dangerously bloated canine.

“I’ve had the dog an hour and I’ve killed him,” Norred recalled of his reaction.

Other victims tell even more heart breaking stories.

“How did it come to you?” Assistant U.S. Attorney Nancy Harr asked.

“Smelly,” Snyder replied. “It wasn’t the dog on the (Web site).”

“How was it different?” Harr asked.

“It was a different color,” Snyder answered. “This dog had one eye. The puppy we ordered had two eyes.”

The dog died from medical maladies months later.

You can read the rest here.

The trial is ongoing.

More news on Gina Price and Rebel Ridge

Some good on going news coverage of the Gina Price (Rebel Ridge Bulldogs and French Bulldogs) trial.

This story is from back in early June – it’s good to see that the judge is treating this case seriously. We’ve all gotten used to the courts treating anything to do with animals as a sort of ‘waste of court time’. Looks like U.S. District Magistrate Judge Dennis Inman doesn’t share that attitude.

From KnoxNews.Com

An accused peddler of diseased pooches got a warning from a federal magistrate judge Tuesday: Stop yanking his chain.

“You’re jerking me around, Ms. Price,” U.S. District Magistrate Judge Dennis Inman told Gina De’Lynn Price.

Price is under federal indictment on charges she bought diseased dogs from Russia and the Baltic states and passed them off as purebred bulldogs sired at her Rebel Ridge Kennels facility in Sullivan County, selling the dogs to unsuspecting customers throughout the United States and Canada.

Court records allege that many of the dogs, which sold for as much as $3,000 each, died from those undisclosed maladies.

Read the rest here.

Looks like Gina Price’s now ex husband got fed up with both Gina, and the dogs. He gives some background on how Gina went from selling home bred Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, to brokering cheap, sickly imports.

From KnoxNews.Com

Adam Price was summoned to the witness stand by Assistant U.S. Attorney Nancy Harr in Harr’s bid to prove allegations that Gina Price went from selling purebred bulldogs sired at her Rebel Ridge Kennels to peddling diseased pooches imported from Russia and the Baltic states.

Harr contends Price gave into greed, realizing she could buy imported canines for a few hundred bucks and then resell them via the Internet to unsuspecting customers nationwide and in Canada for thousands of dollars.

Adam Price even alludes to being distressed at the condition the puppies were in when they arrived at the airport –

“He started out trying to help his wife in the puppy-selling business but grew tired of it rather quickly, he said.

I refused to do a Web site because all my time would be spent updating it,” he said.

He picked up imported puppies from an Atlanta airport but quit after a few runs.

“Most of the time they were pretty messy,” he said of the puppies.

Read the rest here.

A testament to the seriousness with which this trial is being handled comes in the form of the pages of FBI testimony. Gina Price’s emails and other correspondence were monitored for months, leaving a paper trail of sick puppies and fraudulent transactions.

From KnoxNews.Com

Gina De’Lynn Price sold English and French bulldog puppies over the Internet to at least 234 people, according to an FBI agent who testified Monday afternoon on the opening day of her trial.

Price is accused of importing sick bulldog puppies from Eastern Europe and selling them as healthy ones that she raised through her Blountville-based business, Rebel Ridge Kennels, and its Web site,

Special Agent David Campbell’s testimony outlined how Gina Price was well aware that many of the Bulldog and French Bulldog puppies she was importing for re sale were unhealthy, and many were arriving sick with Parvo.

He said Price routinely purchased her animals from three suppliers and complained to the sellers that many of the dogs suffered from parvo – an incurable and often fatal disease that attacks a dog’s intestinal lining – when they arrived in the U.S.

Campbell said Price paid about $500 for each dog, which according to her indictment she then sold for between $1,200 and $2,800. The indictment also claims the dogs suffered from other serious conditions like hip dysplasia and heart murmurs.

Price was also clearly and intentionally leading buyers to believe that they were buying ‘home bred’ Bulldog and French Bulldogs, bred by her at Rebel Ridge, rather than cheaply imported pups. She was also aware that many of the pups weren’t even purebred.

Price is standing trial this week on charges she tricked hundreds of people into believing they were buying purebred English and French bulldog puppies sired at her Rebel Ridge Kennels facility in Sullivan County when instead she was buying diseased dogs imported from puppy mills in Russia and the Baltic states.

…a slew of e-mail authored by Price that suggested she was well aware the puppies she was buying from overseas at a discount were diseased and, sometimes, not even purebred.

“Do you think I cannot tell they’re not full-blooded?” Price complained in one e-mail to a Russian puppy mill operator.

Read the rest here.

In the final story I have to recount, Gina Price adds the ultimate insult to the injury she has done to both the puppies, and the people who purchased them from her, when she compares herself to a humanitarian for ‘rescuing’ the pups from Eastern Europe.

Again, from KnoxNews.Com

The way this upper East Tennessee woman saw it, she wasn’t profiteering from the diseased pooches imported from Russia and the Baltic states.

She was giving the canines a shot at a better life, Gina De’Lynn Price wrote in an e-mail introduced as evidence against her in U.S. District Court on Monday.

“We take these puppies for the almighty dollar, knowing very well ahead of time that they will more than likely come in with some kind of problem that will need medical attention,” Price wrote. “Look at how many illegal (immigrants) come here half dead.”

Really, Gina? Did you bother mentioning that fact – the fact that you ‘knew ahead of time that they would need medical attention’ to your puppy buyers? And did you really just compare the puppies that you traumatized with illegal immigrants who come here seeking a better life?

The last time I checked, Eastern European puppies weren’t willingly tearing themselves away from their mothers at six weeks, and then cramming themselves six deep into crates for 30 hour transatlantic flights.

You can read the mind boggling rest of the story here.

I’ll be doing my best to keep on top of the trial coverage as it comes in, and would welcome hearing from anyone victimized by Gina Price and Rebel Ridge.

A post for Piglet

In a period of time not so very long ago, Frenchies were a unique and unusual dog breed. This had its disadvantages, I have to admit. Potential owners would regularly make bitter complaints about how it was almost impossible to buy one for a pet.

It wasn’t any easier for the potential show owner, either. I personally flew half way across North America for one of my first dogs, had my second flown from three time zones away, and flew around the world for another show prospect (in a sort of ‘Planes, Trains and Automobiles’ comedy of errors that remains memorable to this day, and worthy of an entry of its own).

My very first web search for the term ‘French Bulldog’ turned up nada. Seriously – nothing. Not one single result. Just now, my search for the same term returned:

Results 110 of about 2,190,000 for french bulldog

It’s almost as easy now to find a French Bulldog for sale as it is to find a Golden Retriever, and this rise in popularity (without any sort of drop in price) has made them a popular item for puppy mills and import re sellers – something no one could have anticipated even just ten years ago.

I remember clearly being puzzled by where all of the imported Frenchies were coming from. Time and again, I’d run into new owners who were proudly showing off their European bred Frenchie puppy. Like others, I was well aware there were some excellent kennels in Europe – I just had no idea that they also had puppy mills, just as we do.

Veterinary care in eastern Europe (what little there is of it) is scarcely one tenth the price of veterinary care in Canada or the US, and most of the larger, longer, rangier Frenchies being bred were free whelping and free breeding. This, and a drastically lower cost of living, made it profitable for easter European breeders to sell French Bull Dog puppies for a few hundred dollars American, as opposed to the $2500 they cost in Canada and the USA. Even with the cost of shipping, the North American puppy mills quickly saw the advantages of being able to buy cheap puppies from Eastern Europe which could be re sold to gullible pet owners at inflated North American prices.

A loophole in North American shipping conditions made importing even more lucrative – crates were rated by weight, not number of inhabitants, so a vari kennel rated by the airlines for a ‘twenty pound dog’ could have five 4 lb puppies crammed into it, for the same price. If one or two of them died in transit it was just considered the cost of doing business.

We here in the North American French Bulldog community, while realizing that something was up, remained pretty much blissfully unaware of just how bad things were, and just how prevalent the reselling of import puppies was until the pet buyers started showing up on the lists. Stories of broken hearts, sick dogs, dead puppies and lies told by sellers were heard more and more often. The recurring theme? Few of these new owners realized that their tiny 8 week old (or less!) puppy had been bred, not in a ‘caring breeder’s’ home in North America, but in eastern Europe. The resellers, realizing quickly that puppy buyers were put off by the thought of tiny, helpless babies being sent on 24 hour or longer air flights, were instead marketing them as ‘home bred’.

Still, the French Bulldog fancy wasn’t quite ready for what came next – they weren’t ready for the Wrong Puppy.

PigletPiglet was one of the first – the first time it really hit home for us that anyone could do something like this to a Frenchie. That anyone could be so heartless, so negligent, so cruel.

You have to understand, we were naive. We had certain expectations of the kind of care that Frenchies deserved, and that we all assumed they were getting. Like a lot of other dog breeds faced with sudden and skyrocketing popularity, we just assumed it couldn’t happen to our dogs.

I know that I couldn’t conceive of it – couldn’t believe that anyone would take six week old puppies and crate them, stacked almost on top of each other, denied food and water and even a clean blanket to sleep on, and shipped around the world – a trip that could take 30 hours.

abused import French Bulldog puppy30 hours. Think about that. A six week old puppy, no food, no water, no care – for 30 hours.

Can you blame us if we couldn’t believe it? Could you, if you didn’t see the pictures?

The stories and complaints about the re sellers started pouring in (still do, as Charlotte tells me – and how can anyone now still not know better?). That’s when we learned about Gina Price and Rebel Ridge.

Gina Price’s trial started today in Tennessee. Small comfort to the literally hundreds of people who had their hearts broken by sick and dying puppies they bought from her – puppies they were told were ‘home bred’ and ‘raised underfoot’ (as opposed to ‘bought cheap and shipped far too young’, which was the reality).

The Tricities Newspaper says

Rebel Ridge Kennels owner Gina De’Lynn Hodges Price faces 10 federal
charges, including wire fraud, mail fraud, income tax fraud and social
security fraud that stem from her business’ actions between September
2002 and May 2006.

According to an indictment, Price purchased English and French bulldog
puppies from breeders in Lithuania, Lativa, Belarus and Russia then
sold them as healthy ones through the Rebel Ridge Web site for between
$1,200 and $2,800.

Many of the animals Price sold suffered from serious ailments like
genetic diseases, heart murmurs or hip dysplasia, and some had to be
euthanized shortly after their new owners received them.

Those words, of course, don’t really convey the reality of what it was like for the owners who spent their thousands of dollars, only to receive puppies infected with every disease under the sun. Puppies who died, or who lingered on, only to finally be put to sleep.

Co Founder of the Wrong Puppy website Charlotte Creeley tells me that:

..the animal welfare advocate from California that the DA’s office is flying in to testify as an expert witness is Attorney John Hoffman – together, we run

John has been instrumental in bringing the issue of import puppies to the forefront, just recently having been in large part responsible for getting the 6 mo. age import limitation included in the recently passed Farm Bill.  The man is tireless, and a TREMENDOUS advocate for our French Bulldog breed – and he doesn’t have one!  His breed is Miniature Schnauzers.  I am so very proud to know the man.  I see the emails that flood in to website, and I cannot imagine ANYONE doing more to protect the welfare of our breed at this moment.

If you’re in Tennessee, consider going out to support John and the others who’ve worked so tirelessly to bring Gina Price to justice, and to give a voice to Piglet and the countless other dogs who’ve been victimized by the import re seller trade.

If you can’t come out, at least try to remember this the next time you see one of those ‘healthy imported European French Bulldog puppies’ being pimped like car parts on the on line dog sale websites. Think about what you’re supporting, when you buy from people like this.

Think happy thoughts for Fluffy

Fluffy says
Fluffy says “Don’t hate me because I’m bee-ooo-tiful”

Poor little Fluffy. She might not be the prettiest dog on the block, but didn’t your momma teach you that pretty comes from what’s on the inside? And this girl’s got a pretty nature that shines on through, in spite of all the trauma she’s experienced in her life.

A puppy mill rescue, Fluffy (now known as “Peaches”) came to rescue with a myriad of health issues, most baffling of which was – her poor little bum was sewn shut, apparently to deal with her diahrrea! Good grief!

There’s suspicion it was done as a shoddy attempt to correct a rectal prolapse, but no one knows for sure, and Fluffy isn’t talking.

She still has some leaky bum issues, and is getting paranoid about anyone coming up behind her, because she is (quite understandably!) getting tired of being swiped with baby wipes every two minutes. Her poor little bottom is still red and sore, in spite of the special diet and special care her foster mom is putting into her.

Still, she’s a Frenchie – sunny natured, happy to be alive and loved, and adoring every pat and kiss she gets. You can read her latest updates over on the French Bulldog Village Blog.

Is there anything more resilient than the heart of a rescue dog? No matter the beatings, no matter the neglect, no matter the horrific abuse, time and time again we find that underneath it all there’s a heart that still wants – desperately – someone to love.

Adopting, fostering or even just supporting a rescue dog isn’t something you do because it’s ‘noble’ – you do it because it’s one way to show these dogs that their resiliency in the face of horror, their willingness to try once more to love us, isn’t misplaced. It’s how we show them that, yes – there is goodness in the world.

Someone once said to me “Rescuing a dog is like picking up some dull, dirt encrusted rock, only to buff it up and find that it’s actually a priceless diamond. Under all their filth and neglect, someone’s priceless new best friend is hiding”.

Go find your own priceless new best friend, over on the French Bulldog Village. Yes, I’ve mentioned them before – but now I’m mentioning them again.

They do good works, every day – placing stray “French Bulldog mixed with who knows what” mixes, adopting out puppy mill retirees with no questions asked, helping breeders place their dogs into great retirement homes, and staying out of the politics of “Should we help that person?”, because they know that what matters is the dogs.

They’re also the home to the Karen Krings Memorial Fund – a fund dedicated to helping special needs French Bulldogs in the care of rescue organizations.

Check them out, and toss them a few bucks, even if you can’t adopt one of those adorable little faces.

Oh, and check out FBV founder Charlotte Creeley’s new blog – attorney stuff, dogs, dog training, pugs and other bits and pieces. She’s a great writer, and a true supporter of French Bulldog welfare.