June 16, 2006

Norton had been found as a stray in deplorable condition on May 7, 2006 and was brought to us to be scanned for a microchip, which he did not have.  He had no collar or ID.  He was filthy, overgrown, matted and emaciated.  We fixed him up but unfortunately, an owner came forward and demanded his return.  He had gone missing the same day he was found so he did not get into the shape he was in by living on the streets for an extended period of time.  We filed a complaint the the NJ State SPCA.  The "owner" then claimed to be watching Norton for a friend who faced eviction by having Norton in her apartment.  This person is being charged in civil court for neglect, which amounts to a slap on the hand - a $250 fine.  We have nothing to charge the person with who claims to be the actual owner, although we feel it should have still been her responsibility to monitor Norton while in the care of her friend.  In the end, after 6 weeks of extensive negotiation, we had no choice but to return Norton to the original owner, who now claims to be living elsewhere where she can have Norton.  She had agreed to reimburse his expenses but in the end refused to pay the total amount.  We could have taken Norton back pending full payment but Norton was so excited at seeing the child he had previously lived with that ripping him out of the arms of the child was not an option.  So we will just cut our losses and hope for the best for Norton in the future.

Norton before grooming:
 

 

Norton during his grooming:
 
   

Norton after grooming:  (Although Norton's hair hides his emaciated state, every rib and spine/hip bone can be easily felt.)