Tell New Jersey: Let Patrick the Pit Bull Stay at Garden State Veterinary Specialists
  • Petitioned Collins Ijoma

This petition was delivered to:

Essex County Superior Court Deputy Clerk
Collins Ijoma

Tell New Jersey: Let Patrick the Pit Bull Stay at Garden State Veterinary Specialists

    1. Pamela Black
    2. Petition by

      Pamela Black

      Lapeer, MI

June 2011


Patrick the pit bull became famous after surviving starvation and being thrown down a garbage chute. He's on the road to recovery thanks to the care of Garden State Veterinary Specialists, but because of his celebrity status, others are trying to lay claim to him to capitalize on his fame.

Associated Humane Societies, who wants to put Patrick in a zoo setting and fundraise off him, took the custody battle to court. More than 2,500 members urged the court to rule in Patrick's best interest and keep him at GSVS where he can continue to quietly heal.

On June 2, Superior Court Judge Joseph Cassini III ruled that Patrick will continue to stay with GSVS for the duration of his cruelty trial, stating that he is "both the victim and the evidence in this case," and that he's received adequate care at the vet clinic. AHS may try to claim ownership again once the trial is over, but for now, Patrick can continue to get the care he needs.

Patrick has captured the world’s heart. Now he is in a bitter custody battle headed for court. When discovered in the garbage chute of an apartment building on March 16th, his almost lifeless body was rushed to Associated Humane Societies. With a body temperature so cold that it didn’t register on thermometers, Patrick desperately clung to life and was given a second chance. Since AHS does not have the facilities to monitor Patrick’s condition 24-hours a day, he was transferred to Garden State Veterinary Specialists. There, Patrick has thrived and is improving every day.

Now, AHS wants Patrick back. They plan to put him in their Popcorn Park Zoo until he is adopted out, possibly as early as July. Irritated with a judge’s decision that Patrick should remain at GSVS until the criminal trial against his abuser is complete, AHS filed a 40-page motion requesting custody.

Throughout Patrick’s recovery, GSVS has paid the expenses of veterinary care. They set up a fan page on Facebook to keep the world updated on Patrick’s progress. AHS then filed for copyright on Patrick’s image to insure they are the only ones who can fundraise in Patrick’s name, regardless of the fact they have not contributed any money to Patrick’s care.

The City of Newark has also weighed in on custody over Patrick. They state that their contract with AHS does not grant the shelter ownership of Patrick (remember, pets are legally classified as property) and believe it is in Patrick’s best interest to remain at GSVS.

The Superior Court will hear the case in early June. Ask the court to uphold the previous ruling to allow Patrick to stay in the care of GSVS, the veterinarians that have nursed him back to health, instead of releasing him to be held in a zoo facility.

Photo Credit: The Patrick Miracle (GSVS)

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 2 signatures
    2. Pamela Black
      Petition Organizer

      The custody trial gets underway tomorrow, June 2nd. Keep getting the word out so the court knows just how many of us support GSVS and their dedication to Patrick's healthy recovery.

    3. Reached 2 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Clarisse Conner CHICO, CA
      • over 3 years ago


      Please use the spirit of Mercy as well as the law as the Justice system decides Patrick's fate. Compassion and Love In Action was shown by Garden State Veterinary Specialists. Their care saved his life. Please help Patrick and use your wisdom of Solomon as you decide this custody issue.

      Thank you.


    • Stefani Olsen SILVER SPRING, MD
      • over 3 years ago

      I have watched the story of Patrick with heartfelt emotion and thankfulness to those who have worked so hard to bring him back to life. please leave Patrick with the individuals who have been caring for him. It is in his best interest.

      • over 3 years ago
      • over 3 years ago
    • Deb Smith SAN ANTONIO, TX
      • over 3 years ago

      Please don't pull Patrick from the only security & love he's had. His story is heart wrenching. But, those who were his salvation shouldn't be pulled away from him. He's not a commodity,he's a loving being. AHS might have discovered Patrick's almost lifeless body. However, it's the Garden State Veterinary Specialists that saved him & nurtured him back to health. Please don't make Patrick another circus side show. He needs to stay where he's loved & receives the best care. Even in a child custody case, it is the predominant parent that keeps primary custody. The damages of shared custody on a child are proof positive it doesn't work. A being needs the security of a safe/ consistent place to call their own in order to grow up secure in themselves. This pulling & pushing is not what love is defined as. It's selfish.


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