Friday, April 8, 2011

It's An Ill Wind That Blows No Good

The day before St. Patrick's Day, a Pit Bull was found in the trash of a New Jersey apartment house. The poor creature's ribs were showing in graphic relief. He was so weak, he couldn't stand.

Named Patrick for the approaching saint's day and his reddish coat, he was rushed to Garden State Veterinary Specialists in Tinton Falls. Dr. Thomas Scavelli, director of the hospital said that usually an animal in Patrick's state would be humanely euthanized, but Patrick looked up into the doctor's eyes, seemingly pleading for his life. So the staff did what they could to save him and Patrick did the rest.

He's still far from healthy, but prospects are good that Patrick will one day find his way into his forever home where he will be loved and cared for.

His story has inspired world wide sympathy. Gifts and messages are flooding the hospital where he will remain for an indefinite time as he recovers.

And the good news is that the attention being paid his situation has enabled Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, to launch a fundraising campaign for a state-of-the-art animal shelter to be named for Patrick.

Some people are concentrating on assuring punishment for the perpetrator of the callous neglect that almost led to Patrick's dying in agony. It does appear that she will be answering several charges of animal neglect. But Friends of Portia, while believing in serious consequences for animal neglect thinks that public service at animal shelters and heavy fines are more relevant consequences for perpetrators than jail time.

Meanwhile, Patrick has become the mascot of Garden State Veterinary Specialists. He plays with the toys sent to him by well-wishers, follows staff around, and is always available for pats and attention. No looking back. No recriminations. No hostility to humans for what he has suffered.

"Going to the dogs" should be a compliment.

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