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Forget what you've heard: Pit bulls make excellent pets.

When it comes to puppies, pit bulls are pretty perfect.

Forget what you've heard: Pit bulls make excellent pets.

No matter what you've heard, pit bulls are actually a really friendly, loving breed of dog. They just get a bad rap.

Some cities (and even entire countries) have at one point or another tried to deter ownership of pit bulls on the basis that the dogs were vicious, aggressive, or otherwise dangerous. At its peak, more than 700 cities and towns in the U.S. had pit bull bans. For a while there, the outlook wasn't so positive for our four-legged friends.


"You're afraid of me? But I'm so tiny and adorable and I'll love you forever and ever." Photo from iStock.

Over time, though, it became clear that banning pit bulls didn't actually do much to reduce the number of dog bites being reported, and the problem was less with the breed itself and more with how the dogs are cared for and socialized.

The Obama administration even weighed in on breed-specific bans, stating its opposition.

"We don't support breed-specific legislation — research shows that bans on certain types of dogs are largely ineffective and often a waste of public resources," reads the response to a 2013 "We the People" petition.

As we all know, President Obama has a bit of a soft spot for cuddly dogs — but then again, who doesn't? Photo by Pete Souza/The White House via Getty Images.

The response concluded that "any breed can become dangerous when they're intentionally or unintentionally raised to be aggressive" and it provided a list of steps put forward by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to reduce the risk of dog bites.

But stigma continues to go along with pit bulls. That's why pit bull owners have taken to Twitter to #ShowUsYourPits.

Again, that's "pits" with a "p." If you misread that hashtag, you're probably going to be really disappointed with the rest of this post. Sorry.

Mary shared a photo of her two rescues, Hazel and Brisket.


This goofball is named Chico.


Andre here is a 5-month-old pit bull/Jack Russell mix from Second Chance Rescue. Oh, and also a New York Mets fan, but I can forgive him for that (go Cubs!).


And Roscoe is just too cool for his own good.


The #ShowUsYourPits hashtag was started by Animal Planet to promote the return of its show "Pit Bulls and Parolees."

Pit bulls, somewhat similarly to people recently released from prison, can have a hard time finding a second chance in society — hence the show's name.

The show follows the story of dog trainer and founder of New Orleans' Villalobos Rescue Center Tia Torres. She and a crew made up of people out on parole work to rehabilitate and help find homes for abused and abandoned dogs. The show bills itself as "a chance at redemption for both man and man's best friend."


Do you have a pit bull? Add a photo of your buddy to social media with the hashtag and help fight the stigma!

SO CUTE. SO CUDDLY. SO HAPPY. Photo by iStock

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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.