Auto expo showcases canines up for adoption

Hot diggity dog!: Gizmo, a 7-year-old Staffordshire terrier pitbull mix, cooled off inside a hot rod at Domestic Disorder Auto Club’s car show and pet adoption in Bensonhurst on June 17.
Brooklyn Daily
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These classic cars came in for a pitbull stop.

Pitbull pups cruised into Bensonhurst in style with flaming hot rods for a combination car show and pet-adoption event on June 17. The gathering paired classic cars and adorable doggies to rev up locals’ engines for a good cause, said the head of the group behind the shebang.

“There’s something about classic cars that get people’s attention, and the whole point is to promote awareness that these little guys need help,” said Frank Coppolino, president of Domestic Disorder, which uses its car shows to promote cancer research and raise awareness about post-traumatic stress disorder and animal abuse.

“This year we decided to support animals,” said Coppolino “It was actually my choice. I found a little puppy chained to a fence. He was skin and bones, and I adopted him.”

And it’s not just the pooches who benefit when people adopt rescue dogs, said Coppolino.

“That pleasure you get when you’re walking home and that little guy is looking up at you, I want everyone to feel that,” he said.

The car club teamed up with the New York Bully Crew — a pitbull rescue organization — that brought over five recuperated canines for adoption.

Local auto aficionados perused the jalopies, and got some playtime in with the pitbulls, who are often misunderstood as rough-and-tumble dogs, said Coppolino.

“These guys are thought of as dangerous, but they’re really not — it’s their training,” said the Bensonhurst resident. “They’re often abused and neglected because of that, so we want to help get people thinking about them.”

The speedsters were a great draw to connect neighbors, but more importantly, get them together to expose them to issues in their communities, said another car clubber.

“The cars lure people out, give them a reason to want to get to know each other,” said Heather Cuccia, a member of Domestic Disorder who trekked from the distant borough of Queens for the event. “So this helps connect people and educates them. Educating the community is our main goal.”

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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