Rescue Ink is a group of big, tough-looking, hugely-muscled and tattooed New York City motorcycle riders with a love of animals who use their intimidating looks to rescue pets from abusers. The members of Rescue Ink are not veterinarians. They are concerned citizens with lots of muscle and a huge passion for animals.
Johnny O once worked as a runway model and a bouncer at a bar, where he learned how to approach people and defuse tense situations. Eric owns five dogs: a Rottweiler mix, three miniature pinschers — “sort of like crosses between Dobermans and mosquitoes” — and a Chihuahua mix.
Des was born in Colombia into an abusive household. After his family moved to Jamaica, Queens, he joined a violent gang. It wasn’t until after he was married and his wife got a kitten that his passion for cats kicked in. Des used to hate cats, but after Kitty joined his household, he delighted in “just observing the physics of [Kitty’s] stealthy, liquid movements.” He later became Rescue Ink’s “resident cat guy.”
Batso is in his seventies and is covered head to foot with tattoos, including a colony of bats on his skull. He works with energy and chi, and in some cases, tries alternative healing treatments on animals. In his spare time, he makes soap out of all-natural ingredients and sells them under the name BatsoAP. He says, “Animals teach us about living in the moment.”
The other inked members included in the book are Joe Panz, Big Ant, G, Robert and Angel. Mary and Bruce help with the office work. Profiles of each member are interspersed with stories of animal rescue. They’ve rescued cats from trees – and eighty-plus cats from a crazy cat-lady’s house — dogs from abuse and neglect, horses from starvation, pigs, turtles, and a duck from various bad situations. They protest against factory puppy mills. At school presentations they deputize children as Junior Pet Investigators, who vow to report animal abuse whenever they witness it to a parent, a teacher, or a police officer.
I listened to the downloadable audiobook version of the story, but needed to check out the print version for the great photos of big guys in black t-shirts holding cute little kitty cats and sweet dogs. While some of the Rescue Ink members seem to have left the group (according to information gleaned from their website), the stories in the book are inspiring. I’d recommend this to anyone who loves pets.