An Illinois woman is using colorful dog apparel to help end the stigma surrounding pit bulls.
Erin Crowley is passionate about pit bulls. She is currently the proud pet parent to a rescue pit bull named Dougie, who she adopted after her first pit bull Duncan passed away. But through caring for these canines, Crowley has found others do always view pit bulls with the same enthusiasm.
“I noticed that people wouldn’t get in the elevator with us and would wait to take the next elevator — that’s how scared they were,” she told WTTW about how people would sometimes react to Duncan. “I felt so bad for him because I knew how good of a dog he was.”
Crowley also noticed that buying dog clothes for pit bulls could be difficult, and the options available that comfortably fit the breed were limited.
“I really wanted to get clothes to match Duncan because I was so obsessed with him, and I couldn’t find anything online,” she added. “I could purchase things but when I put it on him it would be coming down to his chest because pitties have wide chests.”
After Duncan tragically died at two years old from a rare form of cancer, Crowley decided to honor his legacy and help other pit bulls by creating the Pittie Clothing Company.
“After his passing, I was more determined to start a line that could help people see pit bull-type dogs in a different light,” Crowley told the outlet.
Pittie Clothing Company creates matching pajamas for pit bulls and their owners and raises awareness about the breed discrimination pit bulls endure. Crowley designs the pit bull PJs to be fun, colorful, and cute in an effort to help humans see the dogs as the affectionate and approachable canines she knows them to be.
“Now they ask, ‘Can I pet your dog?’ It allows the owner to start talking about these pittie-type dogs … It’s really nice and it’s sort of a good conversation starter,” Crowley said of the effect Pittie Clothing Company has had.
After leaving her job as a teacher two years ago, Crowley has put all her focus into Pittie Clothing Company. Along with her mission to end the stigma surrounding pit bulls, she also helps dogs find homes by donating to animal shelters in her area.
Crowley’s shop sells matching owner-dog pajamas, onesies, bandanas, collars, and t-shirts. Pit bull parents looking to coordinate with their pooches can see all the styles the Pittie Clothing Company has to offer on the brand’s website.