Milwaukee, WI -- She was once a puppy -- wiggly and adorable -- full of life, hope and wonder for her world. She was a dog that had a home once upon a time -- she had a name -- her name was Lucy.
Last Friday, someone discovered Lucy. Lucy was struggling to free herself from the cold waters of a lagoon at Washington Park. The local animal control was contacted -- it was obvious that the struggling dog was in desperate need of help.
What the animal control officers found saddened them, but it did not surprise them. Lucy, a young pit bull, was suffering from more than the frigid waters of the lagoon -- her body was battered, torn and scarred. Lucy had been used as a bait dog for dogfighting.
When the people that used her were done with her 'services,' they threw her away -- literally discarding her beaten body in the cold waters. Their intent was clear -- by throwing away the dog that they no longer needed -- she was meant to die.
And die she did. So badly abused was Lucy's body that she was beyond saving. She was suffering from hypothermia, seizures and an array of injuries.
The humane thing to do at this point was to euthanize Lucy -- to free her from her pain and let her run free, away from the horrors of the world she had come to know. Little did her owner know that "free to good home" meant a death sentence to innocent Lucy.
How did animal control know what Lucy's name was? Her prior owner had cared enough to implant a microchip in the dog. Animal control contacted her prior owner and discovered that her original owners had given her away for free on Craigslist years earlier.
Years ... how long had Lucy been suffering as a bait dog? How many times had she been thrown into a dog pit to be subjected to gnashing teeth, torn flesh and absolute terror?
Authorities in Milwaukee report that dogfighting has continued to grow in popularity in this area, especially among gang members. These people have become so immune to the horrors that they are inflicting that they no longer see the dogs as living creatures -- they are solely a means to an end -- a thing.
So objectified are the dogs that they have cease to be seen as dogs -- dogs that breathe, feel, love.
On Friday, a vigil will be held at the Washington Park lagoon at 6:30 pm. Organized by a group known as 'Battle Against Dogfighting,' the vigil is meant to not only honor and mourn the lost life of Lucy, but also, to call attention to the horrors that go with dogfighting.
If you do not live in the Milwaukee area, you can still take a moment on Friday evening to light a candle for Lucy's lost life. In her memory, you can help stand up against the cruel sport of dogfighting.
And always, if you suspect the presence of a dogfighting ring please contact the police right away. Those involved in dogfighting must be stopped. Not only are their activities despicable, but these people are typically involved in other dangerous, illegal activities.
If you would like to continue receiving dog-related articles, including the latest news, tips and advice, please click the Subscribe icon. It's free and anonymous. Thank you for reading and thank you for sharing this story with others.
Note To My Critics:
Tuesday, December 7, 2010