Shelter Worker Stages A ‘Pit-In’ To Get The Dog “Nobody Wants” Adopted – And It Works!

Written by: Dr. Katy Nelson

March 22, 2016

How far would you go to help find a dog a new home?  How do you market a dog who keeps getting passed over because of multiple issues?  If you are lucky, you will have someone like Melissa Gable in your corner, thinking outside the box, working to get the dog adopted.  Gable decided to come up with something so creative that it would generate enough excitement to get any dog a family. And that’s exactly what she did to get shelter dog Lizzy into a home of her own.


Lizzy is a beautiful white 3-year-old Pit Bull who has a few strikes against her.  First, she is a Pit Bull Terrier cross.   Due to some bad press and irresponsible owners, many people are reluctant to adopt a Pit Bull Terrier-type dog.  Secondly, she had been injured, and is missing an eye.  And finally, she needs to be an only pet.  Any one of those issues can make it hard to find a home.  All three of them together meant that Lizzy just wasn’t catching anyone’s eye at the shelter.

Lizzie The Pit Bull

Gable went to her supervisor at Maricopa County Animal Care and Control Shelter because she was concerned about the dogs “nobody wants.”  She suggested that she stage a “Pit-In” based on the 1960s protest Sit-Ins.  With her supervisor’s approval, Gable went about setting up Camp Lizzy right at the shelter.  Camp consisted of a borrowed tent, an air mattress, and a computer along with colorful posters and ’60s-themed art.

Lizzy Tent

Sunday afternoon, the shelter posted an update on their Facebook page:

“Camp Lizzy has officially broken ground!! Lizzy is looking for a furever where she can be the only pet. You can visit this cutie from 11 am to 6 pm at our West Valley shelter in Phx!  Lizzy and her human pal will be camping out in this tent until she gets adopted!! Follow our event page for more info and 24/7 coverage of Lizzy’s camp antics! “

Camp Lizzy

Gable was committed to staying in the tent with Lizzy until they were able to find the perfect home.  Visitation to Camp Lizzy was set to begin!  This morning’s Facebook post brought a smile to a lot of faces:

“Greetings and Good Morning from Camp Lizzy. One of us slept really well last night (hint – it wasn’t the human). We open today at 11 a.m. so be sure to come say hello. Lizzy is at the 2500 South 27th Avenue shelter location in Phoenix.

The pit-in became one of the fastest adoption promotions in history.  Less than 5 hours after Camp Lizzy official opened, Lizzy was adopted and went home with a family of her own.

Lizzy New Family

Featured image via Maricopa County Animal Care & Control

Written by: Dr. Katy Nelson

March 22, 2016

Toothbrush-free dental care for dogs.

Fresher breath in 1–2 weeks.



A themed collection of BARK-designed toys, treats, and chews.


A themed collection of BARK-designed toys, treats, and chews.