After surviving a near-death abusive situation, a dog’s plight is helping raise awareness for animal cruelty with the launch of a toy replica.
About a year ago, a family in Ontario, Canada had to surrender their dog to a shelter after their newborn was allergic to him. Not having the heart to do it themselves, they asked their friend Michael Earl Hill to bring the dog for them and provided the $60 surrender fee. Instead of taking the dog to the shelter, Hill kept the money, bound the animal with duct tape and left him in the woods to die.
Fortunately, someone discovered the dog, now named Justice, and brought him to the Windsor/Essex County Humane Society. Upon arrival, and after the tape was removed, the dog was barely able to breathe and had trouble walking. The recovery process took months, and despite being physically healed, a white scar remained around Justice’s snout.
Hill was found guilty of “causing unnecessary suffering to an animal” and sentenced to two years in federal prison followed by three years’ probation. He is also unable to own a dog for 25 years.
As Hill began serving time, Justice began his new life. His foster family become foster failures and adopted him.
Besides now having a forever home, Justice became a “spokesdog” for animal cruelty. He has been part of various charitable causes and participated in fundraisers for other abused animals.
And now, the Windsor/Essex County Humane Society has created a plush replica of Justice to help raise money for animal cruelty investigations, along with providing funds for other animals who have suffered cruelty.
“In previous years we have sold stuffed animals as ‘virtual adoptions’ of animals in the shelter,” Melanie Coulter, the executive director, tells This Dog’s Life. “But this year, the animal everyone wanted to adopt was Justice, so we thought we would make a stuffy in his likeness.”
The toy is decked out in a blue bandanna and even has an identical nose scar. Each one costs $30 and you can purchase one on the shelter’s website.