Friday, December 2, 2011

Michael Vick's meanest dog doing great in Kanab

Michael Vick in a locker room interview follow...Here's another follow up of the Vick dogs and their remarkable recovery after receiving so much neglect and abuse at the hands of this football icon and role model for our children.

These dogs are themselves remarkable in that they continue to trust humans despite the abuse.  I love reading about their recovery, it gives me hope for this world gone mad we live in.

Please read this entire article and leave them a comment about how wonderful the work they are doing is.

KANAB — He came to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary four years ago under court order and with a reputation as one mean hombre.

Of all the pit bulls in Michael Vick's Bad Newz Kennels, Lucas was the baddest of them all — Mike Tyson, Hulk Hogan and a little Ray Lewis rolled into one, the grand champion, the most vicious of the vicious Vick dogs.

When his dog-fighting operation was busted, Vick was sent to prison and so, in a sense, was Lucas. The court shipped him and 21 of his fighting mates from Virginia to this sprawling, 3,800-acre animal sanctuary outside Kanab, with the stipulation that Lucas spend the rest of his days here. It was your basic life sentence.
That was in January 2008.

Nearly four years later, or 28 by his reckoning, Lucas is running the place.

Open the door to the executive offices, and there he is, a smile on his face, a lick on his lips, and eager anticipation of either a pet or a treat written all over his eyes.

Only the fading scars on his neck and face suggest that he was once the toughest, scariest and most-abused dog in Virginia.

On the day I made Lucas's acquaintance, Judah Battista, the director of animal care at Best Friends, dropped by to talk about how life has gone for Lucas and the rest of the Vick dogs who were relocated to Utah.

While their rate of rehabilitation has varied, he reports that, to a dog, their progress has been consistent and resoundingly successful.

Six of the 21 fighters — Oliver, Mel, Cherry, Halle, Shadow and Handsome Dan — have been adopted and left Best Friends entirely. A seventh, Little Red, is in a foster home about to be adopted.
The rest are alive, well and thriving in Dogtown Heights, the Best Friends suburb that is home to about 400 dogs. (In all, some 1,700 animals, ranging from house cats to horses, are housed in the entire Best Friends Sanctuary at any given time).

That includes Lucas, who has become such a hit they bring him to the administration offices at least two days a week to keep the humans company.

To Judah, Lucas is Exhibit A in the argument that all dogs are good dogs if they're treated well.
He grimaces when he thinks about what could have happened to Lucas and the rest of Vick's pit bulls purely due to reputation.

Many people in authority wanted to euthanize all 49 dogs that were found in various states of neglect and abuse in the Bad Newz Kennels when it was first discovered that in addition to being a star quarterback in the National Football League, Michael Vick was also an illegal-dog-fighting promoter.

The conventional wisdom was that the dogs would never be able to recover. Putting them down was the most compassionate thing to do....(read more)

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