Phantom, The Ambassador of Bully Blend




Phantom's Journey

Phantom came to Silicon Valley Pet Project from the San Jose Animal Care Center. Phantom had been picked up by Animal Control after he was reported running loose in a park. Based on the facts alone, Phantom’s future was not assured. Too many pit bulls are picked up as strays and too many of them decline in the shelter, too often resulting in their being euthanized. However, the facts and circumstances of his impound did not include the heart and sweet nature of this handsome dog. Thankfully, volunteers at the shelter took the time to meet Phantom and get to know him. Their efforts and intervention on his behalf brought him to SVPPs attention at just the right time.

SVPP had recently met a new foster who had years of experience with large dogs and was willing to take a chance on a dog who came with some baggage. When Phantom came to SVPP he was underweight, suffered from swollen feet and eyes due to out of control allergies, and had raw cement burns and large patches of missing fur indicative of a dog who had been kept outside all of his life. It quickly became clear that no one had ever given Phantom a chance. And yet, he has so much love to give! Within a few days of joining his foster home, it became clear that Phantom is a big marshmallow of a dog who wants nothing more than to be with his people and to be an oversized lap dog!

Phantom also captured the attention and heart of Kevin Johnson of Coffee Companions Coffee Company. Kevin had reached out to SVPP wanting to help pit bulls in need. Kevin knew the difficult road so many pit bulls face due to the cruelty and neglect of humans. He wanted his fledgling company to not only sell coffee, but to raise awareness about these inherently good dogs, who are so often misunderstood. Kevin’s first meeting with Phantom was love at first sight, for both of them! Kevin and his team spent much of a day filming Phantom, highlighting his handsome face and sweet, pittie personality! This meeting led to “Bully Blend”, Coffee Companions’ very first product, with $1 from every bag sold going to SVPP to help in our efforts to save more dogs, just like Phantom.

Phantom’s path to a happy ending was not straight. Through absolutely no fault of his own, his first adopter left him back at the San Jose shelter. Thankfully, the shelter worked closely with SVPP to keep Phantom safe until we could find a new adopter. After two, very stressful weeks, a new foster to adopt home was found. Kevin stepped back into Phantom’s life once again, this time as an SVPP large dog volunteer to provide training support, helping Phantom with his leash manners and reactivity, and working closely with his new family to build their confidence working with this big boy. This added support, in concert with the new family’s love for this wonderful dog, and of course, Phantom’s steadfast sweetness, led at last to his adoption.

Thanks to the efforts of the shelter staff and volunteers, SVPP, his foster, his foster to adopt family, and Kevin, this wonderful dog has a loving, forever home at last.

Andrea Lee

Volunteer, Foster Coordinator