When I rescued Stella last year, I quickly realized why she needed to be re-homed. Stella suffered from some pretty epic separation anxiety - she tried to eat her way through my front door when I wasn’t home - and it only took a few hours for her to be bestowed with her nickname, “Little Miss Barkfest”... Oof. But like most people who bring a rescue pup into their home, I will tell you that it has been absolutely worth it! Having Stella has been such a rewarding experience and I couldn’t imagine my life without her... and that is why I have decided to partner with a local rescue for this collection of leggings.

With each pair of Huck and Stella  leggings sold, I will be donating 10% of the profit to the Love Leo Rescue here in Los Angeles. Love Leo’s mission is to rehabilitate abused, injured, abandoned and forgotten dogs. In addition to rescue work, Love Leo hosts free/low cost spay and neuter programs. Their work is so important and I hope that my collab with these leggings will make a difference for puppers who need a second chance at finding their furrrever homes. Just like Stella.

Love Leo is a non-profit, foster-based canine rescue organization located in Los Angeles. They are dedicated to rescuing and rehabilitating abused, injured, abandoned, and forgotten dogs, providing medical care, training, and other services to these animals to make them ready for adoption into forever homes. Love Leo has a soft spot for dogs that needs special medical care in order to make it out of the shelter. They know most adopters will not be able to adopt a dog from the shelter that needs a costly orthopedic surgery, or a puppy that is stricken with parvo. Love Leo believes these dogs deserve a second chance.

In addition to their rescue work, Love Leo hosts a free/low cost spay and neuter program for low income communities in the LA area. Rescuing one dog at a time is important and heartwarming work, but the real way to make a difference in the pet overpopulation crisis is by providing spay and neuter services to those who need it. In addition to improving the quality of life for these animals and the people that love them, it is also the most effective way to reduce the number of stray and unwanted animals. To date, Love Leo has spayed and neutered over 500 dogs and cats locally and over 100 animals at single day events in Tijuana.

1. What inspired you to start the Love Leo Rescue?

Love Leo is founded in honor of my late, great pitbull Leo. I rescued him when I was in law school and knew nothing about the breed - or about how to train a dog. Through trial and error - he taught me everything. He sadly passed away far too young from lymphoma - he was only 6 years old. It took me a few years to take the plunge and file for our non-profit status but I did it. That was nearly 4 years ago and hundreds of dogs have been saved since then. I can say that every dog we save gets their second chance thanks to Leo. 




2. You share touching before and after stories showing the pups you've helped when they were first rescued and then with their furrrrever families. What's the most touching before and after story you've watched unfold?

It's so hard to pick just one. Every dog we rescue makes a transformation - either physically or emotionally or both. It's incredible to see them blossom, lose their fear and regain their joy. Recently we rescued a dog named Petunia. She is an American Bully who spent 6 long weeks at one of the highest kill shelters in Southern CA. She was so scared when we first rescued her - she trembled in the corner and would not walk on her leash. Now - she's is a goofy, happy playful dog. You would never know she had such a sad past.

3. Tell us a little about Leo, your organization's namesake...

Leo taught so many people about pitbulls. When I first brought him home - my dad asked my why I picked that breed. He was only familiar with what the media portrayed. It was not long before they became fast friends. He was a loyal, loving and brave dog and changed a lot of peoples perceptions about pitbulls. Love Leo

4. What's the biggest lesson you've learned from working in the rescue field?

Ive learned so much but one of the biggest lessons I've learned - as corny as it may sound - is to treat everyone with respect and pay it forward. From the clerks at the animals shelters to the vet techs - to the folks that spend their weekend volunteering and the invaluable fosters, members of the public through our free and low cost spay and neuter program or -- even helping another rescue. Every time I am able to do something kind for someone else - it seems to come back to Love Leo tenfold. Being kind is cool.



@loveleorescue on instagram


May 09, 2019 — Chriztina Marie

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