Pit Bulls helping kids trust again
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Some of Fresno's most vulnerable children are finding healing in furry friends.
The kids at Fresno's Evangel Home are learning how to trust again thanks to some tough pups.
Once a week Kira Armbruster brings her 3-year-old English Bulldog, Chubbs, to work with her.
Kira is the daycare manager at Fresno's Evangel Home, a safe haven for homeless women and their children.
Some weeks Chubbs brings along a friend from Fresno Bully Rescue, like Foxy, a 3-year-old pit bull.
Roxy is homeless, but finds lots of love on the playground at Evangel Home.
Kira wants her kids to have fun with the dogs, but she's also teaching them an important lesson.
Kira explained, "To get kids used to being around big dogs and pit bulls and get them exposed to big dogs... not all the kids here have been exposed to big dogs.... to teach them that they're big... but they're safe... they're okay... I don't have to be afraid of them."
For generations pit bulls had the nickname "nanny dog" because of their reliability and gentle nature around children. But over the years pit bulls became vilified because of mistraining by their owners.
Evangel Home Executive Director Gerre Brenneman says she believes these dogs are heaven sent.
Brenneman said, "A lot of the kids here are scared of everything... I think you saw that today... Whenever there's a dog that just lets them be... He invites them in. I've seen that with a lot of our kids... when Chubbs is here... and sometimes Roxy... it's just like an invitation to trust."
Life lessons and love lessons, for dogs and kids without homes. Both species finding common ground on the playground.
animal, local, liz harrison
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