ASPCA Happy Tails: A Healing Home for Harvey

February 10, 2016

One of the saddest things about animal cruelty is that it is the only way of life many of its victims will ever know. It pains us to think about the animals whose limited interactions with humans are comprised of fear, suffering or sadness. That is why we work so hard to save them, and why finding loving adopters for victims of abuse is one of our top priorities. In the case of a pit bull named Harvey, finding the perfect home meant not only ending years of cruelty, but also providing the opportunity to prove that humans are capable of love, compassion and kindness as well. Here is Harvey’s Happy Tail.

Last June, the ASPCA and the NYPD rescued Harvey from abuse in Queens, New York. The two-year-old, 45-lb. pup was suffering from a painful broken leg and spent more than two months recovering in the ASPCA Animal Hospital. In addition, Harvey also seemed under-socialized. He loved to play but had not been taught to do so without jumping up or using his mouth. When on a leash, he pulled eagerly in every direction. It was apparent that despite his sunny-sweet disposition, Harvey’s past living environment had been one without much structure or behavioral attention. We were eager to get him into a home where he could feel safe, secure and guided by a loving adopter.

At the end of September, Harvey was adopted and returned after two weeks. It was heartbreaking to see him brought back so quickly, but the bouncy boy was simply more than the adopter could handle. We knew that his perfect person was out there, and fortunately, five days later, we met Douglas.

“I had wanted to adopt a dog for a long time,” Douglas tells us, “And one day I just decided that it was time.” Douglas headed to the ASPCA Adoption Center where he was introduced to a number of eligible pups—but it was Harvey who immediately caught his attention.

“When I was looking at all the dogs, Harvey stuck out because he was the perfect size, and he just had the demeanor of a nice dog,” Douglas says. The two of them clicked, and on October 10, Douglas headed back to Brooklyn with Harvey in tow.

As suspected, life in a secure, happy home allowed Harvey to blossom into a perfect pet. Under Douglas’s care, he has healed in so many ways: his broken leg is all but a distant memory, and he has made incredible progress with his manners. Harvey is finally housebroken, and Douglas says he behaves very well.

Gone are the days of living in fear, gone are the days of sadness and suffering. Harvey has come so far from his life of cruelty, and we couldn’t be happier for him. “Harvey seems as if he feels at home here,” Douglas says, and we know that for this special dog, nothing could be more meaningful.