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Neglected Pit Bull Rescued by PETA Gets Justice

Written by PETA | May 1, 2013

In February, two PETA staffers volunteering with our Community Animal Project’s straw-delivery program came upon a malnourished pit bull caged in a Portsmouth, Virginia, backyard, and living in filth. 

The pen in which Blackie was kept 24/7 was “wall-to-wall” trash, filth, and feces. There was no food, no drinkable water, and no adequate shelter from the elements. A bucket inside the pen contained disgusting, murky, partially frozen rainwater and algae. The only “shelter” available to Blackie on this cold and rainy day was half of a plastic doghouse turned upside-down. The man who identified himself as the person responsible for Blackie told our volunteers that he was looking to “get rid of the dog”—so we gladly obliged and whisked Blackie away. Blackie was elated to be out of his own waste and happily hopped right into our rescue van. He never looked back.

Dog Up (for Adoption), Abuser Down (by Law)

At PETA’s shelter, Blackie enjoyed a heated room, a sofa to lounge on, fresh food and water (which he gobbled up!), and regular walks. He also got—no doubt for the first time ever—a bath. Our veterinarian found Blackie to be 20 percent underweight and suffering from a severe hookworm infestation. After a few days of treatment (and plenty of TLC) at PETA, Blackie—since renamed Jabber—was transferred to the Portsmouth Humane Society. He’s gained 11 pounds since his rescue and now awaits adoption.

You’ll be glad to know that Jabber’s former owner isn’t faring nearly so well: After PETA’s witnesses testified in court, a judge found the man guilty of cruelty to animals, saying that he found the evidence “shocking” and that it was “no condition to keep a dog in.” He was sentenced to pay a $250 fine and spend one month in jail and is also forbidden from owning “pets of any kind” for two years. If he does not maintain good behavior for two years, his sentence will increase to a $500 fine and six months in jail.

What You Can Do

Jabber is just one of the many dogs and cats who’ve had rough starts in life but are now ready for adoption at shelters. If you’re looking to add an animal (or two) to your family, please give them the homes they so richly deserve—never buy animals from breeders or pet shops. And if you ever see an animal in distress, please, be ready to help

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  • Kyra Merdak says:

    I am now Jabber’s proud momma and I am happy to report that he is doing fantastic. He is a healthy 70lbs and spends his days playing in a large yard with his brother (a rescued Basenji) and lounging on the couch getting lots of belly rubs. Despite his past he’s a super sweet and happy dog and has endeared himself to everyone he’s met. Thank you PETA for giving him a second chance and giving me the chance to have him in my life!

  • debi benninger says:

    Never shpuld he be allowed to be in possession of anything with feelings, as he obviously has no regard for them. I agree he should be locked up alot longer.

  • Unsatisfied says:

    That is not nearly enough time for the damage he did to that dog. He should have been locked up for the same amount of time that he kept Jabber in those conditions (so for however long he had her). Also, as Tanya said, he should never be allowed to have any pets, or children for that matter. I certainly hope that Jabber gets a good home, she looks like a very attentive dog that could thrive in the right place.

  • Tanya says:

    I wish his sentence was longer. He’s too unfit… he shouldn’t be able to adopt another pet ever again!

  • Erika Hoag says:

    Although, I am glad that there was some form of justice for this beautiful baby, I think that the fine should be higher and that the owner should NEVER be able to have ownership of another animal for his remaining life. Need to get harder on these, heartless, Animal Abusers.

  • Rita Ferron says:

    What that man got was not enough. The judge was to lienent, should of made it very very hard on that SOB and should have made it so that he could NEVER EVER OWN AN ANIMAL AGAIN

  • Raffaella Ciavatta says:

    Justice has been made! Thanks PETA!