Two years ago, Patrick the pit bull was found in a trash can in Newark, abused, neglected, and only weighing about 19 pounds. Recently his owner, Kisha Curtis, who was facing eighteen months in prison for animal cruelty, was released on probation.
Since then, Patrick the pit bull has inspired a lot of people, and now has his own Facebook page with over 200,000 likes. He also currently weighs fifty-one pounds, and has inspired a law preventing animal cruelty and tougher penalties for those who do what Curtis did.
Patrick also has a new foster mom, Patricia Smillie-Scavelli. Patrick came to the Scavelli home through the referral hospital Garden State Veterinary Specialists in Tinton Falls where she works. Scavelli says “we work with a lot of the rescues and other humane groups. And so when he needed that specialized care he was brought to our ICU unit”.
Often times, people who abuse dogs are also involved in dog fighting. Groups like Guardians of Rescue go into areas where animal cruelty and dog fighting is prevalent. These groups are extremely important in rescuing dogs like Patrick.
The NJSPCA did a study saying as many as 83% of families who are abusing animals are also then likely to abuse children who are in their homes.
People question whether it’s the owner’s or the dog’s fault. The majority of dog bites and people who are killed from dogs are from pit bulls. Scavelli says that pit bulls “get the bad rap because they are very strong animals”.