Volunteer Spotlight: Danielle Rivera

Meet Danielle!

Volunteer & Foster

Current Pets:
I have two FTTF foster dogs: Blind Joey & Tyson. Both are considered “special needs”.

Joey a 3-year-old, 64 pound, chocolate pitbull. He is super low-key, calm, and sweet. He loves car rides and going for walks. He is blind but gets around well once he is used to his surroundings.

Tyson is a 4.5-year-old, 95 pound, black pitbull, American Bulldog, and Presa Canario mix. Loves Food, and going for walks. Tyson has a congenital heart disorder called Valvular Pulmonic Stenosis. This disease causes a narrowing of the pulmonic valve in his heart, leading to elevated pressure on the right side of his heart. He had open heart surgery to improve his heart function and, although he is not fully cured, it did improve the function of his heart. Tyson has to take beta-blocking medication twice a day for the rest of his life. His medication is relatively inexpensive and he has no problem taking it. Tyson loves life. He enjoys playing in the yard, and is a super snuggler.

My personal dogs are Boxxer & Roxy. Boxxer is a 13-year-old, 115 pound, Siberian Husky/Boxer mix. Boxxer is our senior citizen and is out with all the other dogs. He pretty much sleeps most of the day now, but it super sweet, and stubborn. He is like the Grand dad of the pack. Roxy is a 9-year-old, 64 pound, pitbull mix, and has major anxiety issues. Roxy is very dog-selective, so we tend to rotate her out so she is not with our foster dogs. Roxy is terrified of the outside world. Though we rescued her when she was about 14 weeks old, she started out with a rough life. Roxy is terrified of strangers, especially men, and hats/hoods. She does not like going outside the house, and her brother Boxxer is her security blanket.

How long have you been volunteering with FTTF?
My family has been volunteering with Friends to the Forlorn since December 2012.

Were you involved in animal rescue prior to volunteering with FTTF?
We had gotten involved in rescue back in 2009, so 3 years prior to volunteering for FTTF. Unfortunately, we started out with a less-than-desirable rescue, that was money hungry, and very questionable ethics and morals.

What made you decide to volunteer with FTTF?
I watched FTTF for a while, went to their events, and was very pleased with what I saw. Loved the way they ran their rescue, and their rescue policies are top-notch. My husband and I decided though we do not live relatively close to the rescue, this was the rescue for us. It is so important to us that a rescue stand behind the dogs that they take in, has good morals, respectable ethics, does not use the dogs by exacerbating their stories for profit, and truly has the best interest of the dogs in mind. That’s what we found in Friends to the Forlorn, and could not be prouder of this group.

What are your primary FTTF volunteer roles? Do you have any favorite tasks?
I basically foster, usually two dogs at a time. We attend two adoption events per month, on average. At times I will help with small tasks as needed.

What do you enjoy about volunteering with FTTF?
I love my Forlorn Family! We all lift each other up, and have each others backs. The Forlorn support system is huge! I am proud to consider everyone family. We not only cheer on each other’s foster dogs, but each other as well. It is a good place to be.

What would you tell someone looking for a place to volunteer who is considering FTTF?
FTTF is the best of the best, you will not be disappointed!

How has being an FTTF volunteer made an impact on your life?
We have learned so much, and met so many wonderful, compassionate people being part of this rescue. My daughters have learned to give back to the community, and what it is like to put other living beings before themselves.

Is there anything else you would like to say about your experience as a FTTF volunteer?
We love FTTF!

Interested in becoming part of the Forlorn Family?
Visit our
Volunteer page for more information!

My Pitbull Pride

By Jason Flatt

Some call me an angel but I’ll never take flight.
My breed of dog is a pitbull, it’s for them I am going to fight.

My opponents are many and the battlefields are vast.
The odds are stacked against me, I never retreat, I hold fast.

I will fight the fight on every front I know.
Hand out beatings educationally, teaching until they are in the know.

I suffered some losses, but I don’t step back.
I keep pressing forward and just alter my attack.

I am armed with passion and carry commitment on my side.
Buckle up your seat belts, it’s gonna be a wild ride.

I put spotlights on, not rights, and give light to those in the dark.
I fight with an eternal flame, while they do battle with a spark.

Theres no quit in me, that’s not what I am made of.
Forget the pitbulls…I’m what you should really be afraid of.

You will have to kill me to stop me.
Not even your best shots could drop me.

My heart is somewhat golden and there’s steel in my chin.
You keep your fight on the outside, where mine is from deep within.

My compassion and patience does not make me weak.
Where I come from we don’t just turn the other cheek.

I stand my ground and hold my position.
I’ll preach my pitbull gospel until the congregation listens.

You will find me on the front lines, until I die.
Fighting for my breed, you can’t take my pitbull pride.


Want more of Jason’s poetry? Buy his book: Ode to the Forlorn.