Black Belt Nabs PETA Award for Protecting Dog From Alleged Abuser

Good Samaritan Placed Man in a Chokehold Until Police Arrived

For Immediate Release:
December 22, 2016

Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382

Palm Bay, Fla. – A Compassionate Action Award is on its way from PETA to Florida resident Dennis Davidson after he and his wife confronted a man they reportedly saw chasing, swinging at, and kicking a frightened dog on December 12. When the man became aggressive toward them, Davidson—a martial arts instructor with a black belt in jiu-jitsu—restrained him in a chokehold until police arrived to arrest him.

Davidson told PETA that the dog suffered from a bloody paw, and she’s currently being cared for by Brevard County Sheriff’s Office Animal Services. But once she’s available for adoption, Davidson and his wife hope to make her part of their family.

“This black belt was ready to put his skills to work and become a superhero for a dog who seemed to be in danger,” says PETA Vice President Colleen O’Brien. “PETA hopes his actions will inspire caring people everywhere to speak up and act immediately to stop cruelty to animals.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—urges everyone to report cruelty to animals whenever it is seen or suspected and offers tips for doing so on its website.

Davidson will receive a framed certificate and a box of delicious vegan cookies.

For more information, please visit

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind