Blueberry the Pittie
It dawned on me that over the nearly three years that MPP has been operating we’ve never really explained our love of the Dean Russo commissioned art you are now seeing on some of our merch. By now, you’ve seen Barty Bart – the first doggie we honored with the commission.
Truth of it is, we had no idea how much these Russos would mean to us and to MPP and especially to me now. We have been printing the Bart print for a while now, much longer than we anticipated because we just haven’t had time to plan others (you know, the dog rescue part of this biz is hard-ass, heart-breaking, both soul-filling and soul-crushing, time consuming work.) I rescued Bart in 2015, long before I met Kat or this gang of MPP warriors – little did I know that I would come to MPP and meet the woman that had a hand in rescuing my soul dog from the grasp of the EU table. Small world, eh?
Enter 2020 when we would form MPP, draft corporate statements and start building our non-profit. On a whim, I emailed Dean Russo to ask if I could use my Barty Bart commission on our MPP merch. Of course he said yes, because his Pittie T-Shirt has become iconic wear – Dean’s mission to help fight the stereotype these dogs still face put him on the map. While he has become a national, even internationally known artist, he is still one of us. A pittie lover. He couldn’t say no, and he didn’t. We are so fortunate – commissioned art used for commercial purposes can cost thousands of dollars and be simply out of reach for a non-profit with no money. But then it was done. Dean said YES and as they say, the rest is history. Bart has been on our merch for a year or so now. We love him. I love him. I have one of everything with my Barty Bart on it. We know you love him too. But alas, it’s time to retire BARTY BART and shepherd in a new Dean Russo commission.
Introducing Blueberry the Pittie!
Blueberry, or simply “Blue” loved kids, squeaky stuffies (especially sharks) riding shotgun with his Dogma, playing with the hose, swimming, sunbathing, and hating on the poor the mailman. What he loved the most was his soul person, Hannah. By her side from the time he was a mere pup, she drug him across the country and back, through boyfriends, and cosmetology school. They were ride or die besties. They were inseparable for eight years. But there was something wrong with Blue – he had little body awareness and sometimes his legs wouldn’t work. Over time Hannah would learn his diagnosis. Auto-immune meningitis. His spinal cord was compressed at his neck and there was no cure. No real treatment, just palliative care as Blueberry progressively lost the use of his back legs. Blueberry had the very best of everything until the chunky velvet nugget couldn’t do it anymore.
He left a crushingly large hole in Hannah’s heart. And our hearts, too, watching from the outside, knowing the pain our teammate was experiencing. It’s not fair to love them so much and have to let them go. It feels unbearable, but maybe, just maybe – seeing Blueberry the Pittie on a colorful shirt, with that inquisitive look on his face, will soothe the soul. One more way Blue can be with his Dogma all the time. Wipe your tears with your sleeve and buy the damn shirt. Oh, and if you want to Save a Dog, Keep Yours!