Kristina Rinaldi and DDR

Story #6
Air Date:  August 7, 2013

Kristina Rinaldi has helped or rescued more than 1,500 dogs in some of Detroit’s roughest neighborhoods with the non-profit Detroit Dog Rescue also known as DDR.

In many ways, Kristina relates to the dogs she helps. She spent most of her childhood and teenage years in and out of foster homes or sleeping on couches of friends and relatives. At age 13 she was working for drug dealers helping throw Rave parties and by age 15 she was rapping in the hip-hop scene. She became friends with a rapper named Hush who started DDR. After putting herself through college and getting a job at a hospital, Kristina joined DDR to follow her passion of helping dogs that are in need.

Kristina coordinates volunteers to help rescue and foster many dogs that would otherwise be put down. She also does community outreach and brings dog food and even dog houses to pet owners who won’t surrender their dogs but need extra help taking care of them.

Kristina’s salary is bare bones and barely covers the expenses of coming to work, but she says the dogs make it worth it. “When you grow up feeling not cared about, it’s awesome to come full circle and rescue something else that feels like that,” explained Kristina.

After being surprised with a check for $50,000, Kristina immediately bent down to one of DDR’s rescued dogs and announced, “this is going to help spay and neuter so many dogs!”

Regrettably after the filming of this interview the dog Piglet – shown in the video, had to be humanely euthanized by a DDR vet, as a result of a seizure that left him neurologically impaired and unable to live a quality life.

More information on DDR can be found at

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10 Responses to Kristina Rinaldi and DDR

  1. constance August 7, 2013 at 2:08 pm #

    Good for her….see, there are GOOD people in this shitty world…congrats to you honey

    • Robert August 10, 2013 at 9:57 pm #


  2. cathy August 7, 2013 at 3:37 pm #

    Kristina, your karma went through the roof. This world would be a much better place with more good souls like yourself! I would love to see your NPO branch out across the US, and my self be involved!

  3. ALEX ANTELO August 7, 2013 at 7:50 pm #

    Thank you for your courage, god bless you

  4. hannah t August 9, 2013 at 9:30 pm #

    thank god for people like you

  5. tracey August 10, 2013 at 10:57 am #

    so well deserved!!

  6. Rosie August 11, 2013 at 4:25 pm #

    Thank you Kristina for the wonderful work you are doing. Thank you 5 hour energy for continuing to doing such charitable giving.

  7. Jeri August 12, 2013 at 6:44 pm #

    Bless you and what you are doing. Start a website for funding with a pay pal account and people will help you!

  8. Jeri August 12, 2013 at 6:48 pm #

    Just finished watching the whole episode. Thank you to 5 hour energy. Bless you and all you do.

  9. Someone who cares January 8, 2014 at 11:58 pm #

    All these people here are real heroes. The fact that they don’t even take the money for themselves is incredible. The first thing that comes to their mind when they get extra money is to put it into helping others. So incredible

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