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Lewis the Bulldog Makes Broadway Debut



Look into the eyes of Lewis, an English bulldog, and you see a life that hasnít been easy.

Born with a defect that makes his legs drag somewhat, Lewis was picked up as a stray and spent his days at our Newark shelter. Because of his handicap, Lewis must wear special protective booties when outside. Then animal trainer Bill Berloni, (at left with Lewis), looking for a replacement for a bulldog named Rufus in the Broadway hit, Legally Blonde Ė The Musical, (where Chico, also from AHS, and now Bruiser, is a hit), met Lewis, saw those soulful eyes and knew where he belonged.

Lewis is now Rufus, and living the life of a celebrity on Broadway. Nightly, his character stomps on stage at the Palace Theater, making thousands of theater-goers smile. When Berloni came to Newark to look at him, staff all held their breath, hoping that Lewis would fit the bill because he is so sweet. Happily, Bill thought it was a great idea that even a handicapped dog could make it to Broadway.

AHS is auctioning by mail and e-mail a pair of tickets to see Legally Blonde, receive a backstage tour and meet both Lewis and Chico the Chihuahua. Read more here for complete details. The deadline is Nov. 1st! The highest bidder will be notified of their victory.

Unfortunately, Lewis wasnít the last purebred to take his leave of any of the Society shelters. Many purebred dogs currently wait at our three facilities, surrendered or abandoned because their needs and/or behavior was not understood.

Different breeds have different and unique needs that owners often do not learn about until after bringing them home. Bulldogs, for example, are often given up or abandoned because of the extra care they need. The folds of their skin make it necessary to wash them frequently with medicated shampoo, and they often have other physical challenges.

Other purebred dogs need special diets or grooming and some are susceptible to different physical conditions and ailments. Whatís more, different breeds have different temperaments. Similarly, puppies and adult dogs have completely different needs and personalities. Thatís why it is vital that people research and have a complete understanding of the type of dog they are planning to bring home before doing so.

Luckily, Lewis was given a second chance at a good life. Not all dogs are that lucky. But your looking into adopting might just make one of them have a turn of luck for the better.

8/17/2007

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