Doggie DNA Tells Who Can Stay

August 7, 2012  

A military family learns the good and bad of DNA testing

By Kaileigh Tobusch

Hello my name is Kaileigh, and my husband’s name is Alex. We have two amazing pups, Bruna and Nugit. When my husband and I had moved to Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton in California, they did allow pit bull type dogs. We just had the one at the time, Bruna, and we moved on base June of 2009.

That September, my husband, Bruna and I had drove home to Chicago because Alex was going to deploy for his third time. We had decided we were going to keep our base house, and Bruna and I would stay in Chicago to be with family while Alex was gone. We said our goodbyes and Alex flew back to California and was a week out from leaving.

I couldn’t stand the fact I was in Chicago knowing he was still in the states, so I flew right after him back to our house in California to be with him those final days. I walked out our front door and found a piece of paper on the ground, and it said we had to have Bruna complete the Canine Good Citizen test, have the Home Again microchip put in her, and have her bite report checked by Jan. 1, 2010. If she passed the CGC test we could keep her until 2012.

So right off the bat I sent my husband off on his deployment and then scrambled to get my dog and all my clothes and such from my mother’s in Chicago and had Bruna enrolled in obedience training, and then she took the CGC test and of course passed with flying colors and became a Canine Good Citizen.

She was grandfathered in and allowed to live on base until 2012. Since being grandfathered on base, Alex returned from one deployment to then leave for another deployment. A month before he left was when I had come across Nugit and wanted to bring her home! We took a picture of her and brought it to base animal control because we were told she was a mix breed of Boston Terrier, French Bulldog and American Staffordshire. They said she could come live with us because she wasn’t enough pit bull to fall under the ban.

Months went by and we got a knock at the door, and animal control took Nugit and then told us we needed to bail her out and pay for a DNA test. She would be on an in-home quarantine pending the results. So I did as I was told and I got the clue to then DNA test my other dog, Bruna.

We got the results back for both dogs, and it turned out that Nugit was 100 percent English Staffordshire Terrier, and Bruna turned out to be only 38 percent American Staffordshire. The breed ban said if the animal was 49 percent American Staffordshire and below they weren’t pit bull enough to be part of the breed ban. They let Nugit stay at our house till my family drove out from Chicago to visit over Thanksgiving 2011 and then take Nugit home with them. Bruna then was taken off the breed ban all together and could stay till whenever we decided to move.

We knew my husband was going to school in March, and we would be permanently changing stations in April. We had to spend six months apart from Nugit, and we have since moved to our new duty station. I was able to find a house for us to rent off base, so we are now all a family again!

I can’t imagine our life without our dogs. I know a lot of people didn’t have the same outcome as we did and got rid of their dogs. I was so surprised that the whole time we could have done the DNA test from the get go, and a lot of animals wouldn’t have had to go.

Sign the petition to standardize military pet policies. Visit Dogs on Deployment for more info.

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9 Responses to “Doggie DNA Tells Who Can Stay”
  1. Between the police shooting pit bulls at random and reading more stories such as this not to mention a good friend of mine who serves in the military having both of pitties taken from her is driving me crazy.  This all out war on this bully breed is irritating me.  Glad you were able to keep your babies and are a happy family.  What fires me up more than anything is how they want to blame these dogs however, let the scums that mistreat these dogs get away scott free..where’s the logic in that? Enjoy your family and than you your husband for his service!

  2. barbaraleeanderson07090 says:

    First of all, Kaileigh, many, many thanks to you and your husband for your service to our country.  Secondly, congratulations on winning the DNA war!!  How blessed Bruna and Nugit are to have such loyal, loving parents.  And how blessed you and your husband are to have such loyal, loving pitties.  Even though the DNA tests show that your pitties are not “legally” pitties, people who see them will immediately assume that they are.  Think of that as a really positive thing.  Now you and hubby have the opportunity to travel around from base to base, living and loving your “pitties,” and demonstrating to people who might never have the chance to be around them just how wonderful these dogs truly are.  “To whom much is given, much from him will be required.”  (Luke 12:35 NKJV.)  We, who have pitties in our homes and hearts, are blessed beyond description.  But that blessing also means we have an even greater obligation than other responsible owners to change the public’s perception of our dogs.  The best to your family in that endeavor!

    • StubbyDog says:

      barbaraleeanderson07090 Oh, Barbara, what beautiful words of encouragement and support. We love you! And Diva too!

  3. AriRachelField says:

    that top photo–oh my god those faces! They are just adorable and it makes me furious that people who serve our country, and their loved ones, aren’t allowed to have dogs they love and take care of because of stupid ineffective rules. 

  4. LilisNotes says:

    Kaileigh, thanks for sharing your story; I am glad it has a happy ending.  I am so proud that you and your husband did what you needed to do in order to keep both fur kids, Bruna and Nugit; they are two lucky pups.I believe the military should not enforce these bans, especially after having had had, a Pitbull service our country.   I hope its OK to share a link here, to a post my husband wrote on Pitbulls and DNA Tests: Liliana

  5. skreidle says:

    I think the inconsistency/inaccuracy of canine DNA tests is yet one more reason not to discriminate or legislate by breed! (That said, I’m really glad it worked out for you and yours, because they’re ridiculously adorable. 🙂

  6. DeeBrookshire says:

    our men and women lay their lives day every day for us and their suppost to give up their family as well.REALLY? Some people in goverment need to reread or just read in new laws.Our pets are our family members as well.

  7. BrunaNugitT says:

    Thank u so much for all the wonderfull comments. It means a lot to us. I can honestly say if I didn’t have my dogs to keep me busy and fill the empty spot in bed while Alex deployed, I know I wouldnt be able to have made it through so many. The military already gets our husbands/wives the least they can do is let us have our dogs! We send a huge thank you to Stubby Dog for giving us a place to be heard! The Tobush Family!