A wounded stray dog picked up by Animal Care and Control earlier this month was nearly euthanized over concerns he might have rabies, but an animal rights group has taken the city to court this week in hopes of saving his life and nursing him back to health.
Jake, a 4-year-old mutt, was taken to a Harlem shelter at the start of November after workers picked him up. And he was in pretty bad shape: "He had bite marks to his body, and they weren't sure how he was bit," attorney Susan Chana Lask told us. "He was not in good condition." The city became concerned Jake was infected with rabies, and the Department of Health reportedly planned to euthanize him on November 16th.
Instead, though, Lask and activist group The Lexus Project filed a restraining order against the city to keep him alive. "If we did not step in as we did, he could have been executed or possibly died from being isolated," Lask said. "It was just a unilateral 'Let's just destroy the dog,' order. That's not fair to anyone." Luckily, a Manhattan judge signed an injunction order on Monday to stop the city from euthanizing the dog and requiring the city "protect him and keep him in good health" until his case is be heard again tomorrow.
A spokesman from the city's Law Department tells us that "Animal Care and Control takes great pains to balance public health and safety concerns with an animal’s well being and has been providing regular veterinary care to Jake."
Now, though, the Lexus Project is tasked with coming up with a care plan for Jake—though city officials reportedly want to quarantine the dog for six months, activists hope to get him out of the city shelter, adopt him and help get him healthy again. "That's what this case is about, giving a voice to these animals," Lask, who will be returning to court tomorrow to advocate for Jake's adoption, said.