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Pit bull advocacy group seeks to change laws, perception

Barbara Getman, a certified trainer, works with a pit bull named Apollo at Cuse Pit Crew's free dog training session at St. Lucy's on Syracuse's Near West Side. The sessions are part of the advocacy group's mission to "refuel the human-animal connection" and rehabilitate the image of the pit bull and other bully breeds, as well as to lobby for better care of the dogs and stronger penalties for those who abuse or neglect them.

Barbara Getman, a certified trainer, works with a pit bull named Apollo at Cuse Pit Crew's free dog training session at St. Lucy's on Syracuse's Near West Side. The sessions are part of the advocacy group's mission to "refuel the human-animal connection" and rehabilitate the image of the pit bull and other bully breeds, as well as to lobby for better care of the dogs and stronger penalties for those who abuse or neglect them. Photo by Sarah Hall.

— While Syracuse’s dogs certainly benefit from Cuse Pit Crew’s activities, they’re not the only ones.

“It’s definitely about the community,” Higgins said. “We want to try to give some of the residents in the community something positive to focus on. We’re using that dog — the pit bull or any other bully breed that comes down — as the vehicle for bringing about positive change... It is so much more than just the dogs. I love this community. I love Syracuse, and I want to see the residents feeling empowered. This is definitely a way to do it.”

To learn more about Cuse Pit Crew or to donate, visit cusepitcrew.org or Facebook.com/CusePitCrew.

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