Williamsburg tattoo parlor hosts fundraiser for pitbulls


Dina DiCenso, owner of Gristle Tattoo in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, is a dog person. Specifically, she loves pitbulls. She has two, Squeak and Lily.

“They’re extremely cuddly. I’ve never had a dog that’s so cuddly,” she says. “Pits who are raised around niceness, they can grow up to be the nicest dogs ever. They’re a product of their envieonoment, just like people. Here are her pitbulls, Lily and Squeak.

Lily and Squeak, both two years old, were rescued from a shelter in Mount Vernon, NY, where she lives with husband, Suny Downstate professor Michael Szarek. The couple also has a spaniel named Godiva, Milo, who is a Lab-Rotweiller mix, and two cats, Possum and Violet. When a friend, local animal champion Howard Wu, told her about visiting Animal Farm Foundation, the excellent upstate New York not-for-profit devoted to rescuing, training and rehoming pitbulls, she decided to hold a fundraiser at her year-old North Eighth street shop to help raise money for the organization.

Kat GunRene GagnonNick DeSena and Kelly Vetter are among the artists who’ve contributed artwork to the show (scroll down to see some of the offerings). All proceeds will go to Animal Farm. The artwork will be on sale tomorrow evening from 7 to 10pm at the shop at 178 North 8th Street in Brooklyn.

Gristle Tattoo also has been holding regular adoption events; they give all tattoo deposits on adoption days to the rescue they’re hosting. Their next one will be for the organization Empty Cages. Dogs and cats will be up for adoption, as well as mice, and rats.

Yes, rats and mice. DiCenso is a huge lover of such things. She bares a tattoo of her first rat, Pickles. Here he is riding her Vespa.
Today, she has four members of the rodentia order, all rescued: Radish, Doug, Turnip, and Waffle.
“I’ve just always really liked them–and you can’t just have one,” DiCenso says. “You know those videos you see sometimes where they show rats running in the subway? Like over people’s feet? I think those people are so lucky. If that were me, I’d snag them and bring them home.”
Here are some of the pieces that will be on sale at the benefit:

“And You Call Me An Animal?” By Brian Wren

By Mike Wohlberg

By Kelly Vetter

By Jo Lind


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