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)
While his recovery has been extraordinary, I do not believe that it is in his best interest to be released to Associated Humane Societies. A previous court ruling, the City of Newark and NJ SPCA all agree that Patrick should remain at Garden State Veterinary Specialists for the duration of his recovery process.
Instead of fighting over the rights to one dog, Associated Humane Societies needs to focus their attention on what is in the best interest for all the animals at their shelter. This much time and energy over Patrick’s possession would be better focused on pet adoptions, spay and neuter services, and returning lost pets to owners.
I am discouraged by Associated Humane Societies’ apparent need to cash in on Patrick’s status as a world-famous dog rather than giving him the opportunity to heal. Patrick deserves to find a home that will afford him some anonymity with the right family instead of being auctioned off to the highest bidder.
I respectfully request that you uphold the previous ruling and allow Patrick to remain in the care of the staff at Garden States Veterinary Services.