Beautiful Joe

May 2008- Read the update on beautiful Joe at the bottom of this page


During the summer of 1999 the weather was very sunny and hot. On August 2, a call came in to the Shelter. "There's a dog in the garbage at ________" Chief Animal Warden Bill Andrews left immediately.

The puppy was thrown out with the garbage. The plastic carrier where he must have lived most of his short life was an inch deep in fecal and urine matter. Flies covered both the carrier and him, feasting on the mess, and on the fresh bloody stumps that used to be his ears. Andrews took him directly to a vet for treatment.

At the shelter C.A.R.E. volunteers read the paperwork on the puppy and asked themselves "Who could have done this? What could a six-week old puppy have done to deserve having his ears cut off? How could one of our neighbors in Evanston have heard this puppy screaming (he must have screamed; his ears looked like they had been sawed through with dull scissors) and not done anything?" Darlene (our puppy foster parent) read the report and went looking for the puppy at McCormick Animal Hospital.

At the hospital the puppy was so covered in feces he had to be bathed before being examined. His ears were cleaned because of the wounds and the blood inside them. He was found to have coccidia (a treatable disease of the intestines that causes diarrhea) and worms. He had been starved. He was given antibiotics and an ointment to help heal his ears. He had to be hand fed very small amounts of food every two to three hours otherwise his stomach rebelled and he threw up. We named him Beautiful Joe after the title character in a book by Marshall Saunders. Darlene lengthened it to Joseph to give him the dignity someone tried so hard to take away.

Now at home with his foster family Joseph had a difficult time adjusting. He did very well with the other family dogs but he screamed when a person touched his head. He was very hand shy - no one could reach for him without him moaning and trying to get away, and he shrieked when he was finally picked up. Once he was able to start eating on his own, he was food aggressive and protective of his bowl. He was scared of going outside, even with the other dogs. When he had to potty he would go into his crate to do so. When he was in his crate and Darlene came to get him, he hid at the back and tried to get under the blanket crying the whole time, trying to get away.

Through patience, love and consistency, Joseph has evolved into a friendly, confident puppy. His wounds healed; he looks upon people with interest rather than terror, greeting with a wagging tail not a scream. He has been placed in a home with two adults who will continue to nurture him and keep him safe.

Joseph was one of three puppies that came to C.A.R.E. and the Evanston Animal Shelter abused this past summer. Brooke, a 4-5 week old puppy was rescued from two preteens who were throwing her into the lake to see if she could swim. A woman negotiated and paid to get her away from her terrorizers. The other, Ashby, was found wandering in an alley at the tender age of five weeks very thin, dehydrated, and scared.

First Strike Animal Cruelty/Human Violence, The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), and the American Humane Associations (AHA) Campaign Against Violence The Link, are striving to call attention to the fact that cruelty and violence to animals is linked to and a precursor to violence against humans.

AHA research indicates that violence against pets may be an indicator of other forms of family violence. In 60 to 80% of families where the male hits the female, there will also be abuse of children and probably companion animals as well. The HSUS reports child abuse and neglect cases have rose from an estimated 1.4 million to 2.8 from 1986 to 1993.

Stories of people who are violent toward both people and animals are becoming more and more common. The FBI has used this correlation in profiling serial killers. Some of our nation's most violent offenders, such as Jeffrey Dahmer, Albert DeSalvo and David Berkowitz, shared a history of excessive cruelty to animals in childhood.

C.A.R.E. believes that violence towards humans and animals springs from the same source and should be treated with the same concern. Recognizing the link between animal cruelty and other violence may be our first line of defense in breaking the cycle of violence in our communities.

C.A.R.E. knows all too well how many cases of animal neglect and abuse are not reported. Animal neglect is inadequate shelter from the elements, not receiving food or fresh water daily. It can also be not being groomed, fed enough or receiving proper vet care. Dogs and cats kept outside without daily care can be attacked by other animals, or abused by people. They can become infected with deadly viruses, worms or other parasites. Report animal neglect to your local humane agency. Often education on proper pet care is all that's needed to fix the situation.

Animal cruelty is a crime in all fifty states. Intentional maiming, hitting, setting on fire, dragging behind a car are all blatant cases of abuse.

If you know of a child or an animal who is being abused don't wait until it's too late, or think that someone else will get involved. Report abuse to your local social service agency or humane agency. There are others like Joseph who are counting on you to save them.

If you know of a child or an animal who is being abused don't wait until it's too late, or think that someone else will get involved.

To report animal abuse, call your local police department.

To Report child abuse, call the DCFS Hotline: 1-800-252-2873
or call your local police department.

Beautiful Joe Update
May 2008


We are very happy to share these photos of Joseph with CARE!  He is doing really well and is a happy, settled dog who loves to take long walks, play chase and catch, and spend many nights sleeping in our bed with his head on a pillow!  He has an older brother named Milo, and a new younger sister named Leila with whom he is quickly learning to get along.  Joseph is one of the sweetest dogs we've ever known and we feel truly blessed to have him as part of our family.

Thank you to CARE for taking those important first steps and helping him through such a difficult start in his life.

The Garcia Family