Bronx Dog Fighting Victim Recovers, Finds New Home

Thursday, January 31, 2013 - 1:00pm
Bronx Dog Fighting Victim

On the heels of last week’s guilty plea by Raul Sanchez for his involvement in a Bronx-based dog fighting operation, we are thrilled to report that many of the dogs are thriving in their new lives as beloved pets.

In November, we told you a very happy story about Ninja, one of the dogs we rescued and rehabilitated, who found a wonderful forever home. Now we have another heartwarming success story to share: Mona Lisa, who was one of 50 dogs we rescued in June from that dark, dingy Bronx basement, recently went home to a loving family.

Mona now lives with two loving pet parents in a spacious house overlooking 50 mountainside acres, where she takes frequent hikes with her new dog sister, Zelda. Her other favorite activities include snuggling with Zelda by the fireplace and lounging on the couch with her new pet parents.

Mona Lisa’s journey to adoption wasn’t easy. After her rescue, she was transferred to one of our partner shelters, The Animal Support Project, Inc. (TASP) in Cropseyville, New York.

“When Mona arrived at the shelter, she cried and whined like a hyena and was extremely anxious, usually sitting pitifully at the kennel door,” says Melinda Plasse of TASP. But after plenty of attention, care and time to recover, Mona made great progress. “She is outgoing,” Melinda reports, “loves belly rubs, and is kind as can be to children and other animals.”

When we picture Mona Lisa romping around in the woods with her new family, we can’t help but smile. We’re working to make sure that animals nationwide won’t continue to suffer due to the cruel practice of animal fighting. Last week, legislators reintroduced the Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act, which would make attending an organized animal fight a federal offense and would impose additional penalties for bringing a minor to an animal fight.

Please join us in our efforts by asking your own House representative to support this important humane legislation.

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Michelle Bertolo

I don't understand why I have not been able to find any studies on the psychology of dog fighting. All of these people, who span all races, all cultures, cannot be sociopaths. We can punish, but we can't hope to change a person's world view until we understand his context. We need information to use to reeducate. Name calling, emotional over reaction, & calls for an eye for an eye, though somewhat satisfying, only shuts the dog fighter down to insight & change. They must go to jail. I think they should be held financially responsible for the rehab of the animals. However, if we want to stop the problem, we have to change the person and culture.
The ability to distance oneself from another's pain extends to those in research and factory farming.... Again, all of these people cannot be sociopaths. I can't find interviews and serious research on this other than old research done on military torture.

Nancy MacGarva ...

Those eyes speak of the tender innocence that survive the complexities and cruelty of man. Animals are true champions who are faced with horrific challenges yet their unconditional love never leaves their heart and in the end they always forgive. THANK YOU ASPCA!!!


These kind of humans have no soul and will be judged but the greatest of all....our God. I would love to be able to see them sent to burn in hell of all eternity!!


I am thrilled to hear this good news - especially after watching animal rescues on Animal Planet and knowing if she would have reacted with any kind of growl, she would have been put down! The terror is in living in a "disposable" society and people not having respect for ALL living things. We are ALL in this planet together and ALL have a function. I pray that all the animals are either SAFE or in HEAVEN where they will always be safe & loved! God Bless those who rescue these precious ones, too! xoxo


"I'm a Good Dog" That is why All Dogs go to heaven.Dogs are so special animals, I hope these criminals are prosecuted.

Brandon j sirota

While the history of the pitbull is one of dogfighting, I am overjoyed to read about efforts to stop this barbaric practice, and as a owner of 2 Pitts we all thank you, god bless

joann ilgenfritz

the only reason dog fighting happens is that some cultures just don't want to work - even Oprah excused this pagan behavior on her show a few years ago and after receiving tons of comments from shocked listeners she never said another word. There is no excuse and this horrific practice must be stopped - no animal should have to suffer fighting and torture because some people just don't want to get a job. Hope legislature passes laws this year to put an end to dog and any other animal fighting this year. Thank you for caring and I hope Mona Lisa lives a long and much deserved happy life.


innocent animals depend upon us humans to protect them. those who abuse animals, through dog-fighting and other violence and neglect, are the lowest of the low. they should be punished with circumstances forced upon them identical to those that they perpetrated upon the animals.

Lora McCabe

The only possible end to animal fighting rings is to punish all the people involved in it by making them fight each other. We should keep them in dingy conditions as well, so that they experience the same cruelty they were dishing out. It's time to start treating them like the beasts that they are, instead of their treating animals who are worth a lot more than these people.

Kathy Rogan

My neice found her on the road and brought her to me to see if I wanted her,she is havanese. She had heart worms,and hook worms, her nails were growing in to her pads. I took her to the vets and she was treated and is doing great and I love her.