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Abused Pup Joins New Family

August 5th, 2004, 03:03 PM
AHS rescuer adopts pup who was stabbed, hogtied and dumped in trash


Arizona Humane Society EAMT Marissa McHugh snuggles with her new pup, “Riley.” McHugh helped to save the pup’s life last Saturday, and helped police track down the suspect in the case.
Just six days after she was rescued from a trash bin and four days after her alleged attacker was arrested and jailed, an abused puppy is finding out what it’s like to be part of a loving family.

“Riley,” a 3-month-old German shepherd/boxer mix, was placed today with Marissa McHugh, the Arizona Humane Society Emergency Animal Medical Technician™ who helped to save her life last Saturday, and who aided Glendale Police detectives in apprehending the alleged abuser.

“I just fell in love with her the moment I saw her and I feel like there is no way I can part with this dog,” said McHugh, who graduated from the AHS EAMT™ Academy in March. “I feel like it’s fate that she is part of my life.”

McHugh, who previously worked on a United States Coast Guard Search and Rescue Unit, has to fight back tears when she talks about rescuing the pup, who’d been stabbed, hogtied with duct tape, and thrown in the trash bin of a Glendale apartment complex. The pup’s muzzle had also been taped shut, leaving her unable to pant or bark. Had she not been rescued promptly, the pup would have most certainly died.

On Monday – little more than 48 hours after the pup was rescued – Glendale police arrested 23-year-old Robert Escobedo in connection with the abuse of the puppy. Escobedo could now face felony animal-abuse charges.

“When I first saw her, she had this look of terror on her face,” McHugh said. “I had never seen anything like this before – it was so terrible. But then she warmed up to me so quickly, and she seemed grateful and relieved that somebody was taking care of her.”

“Riley” (previously dubbed “Lelo”) will join McHugh and her husband, as well as their dog, “Jewel” and five housecats. McHugh said that “Riley” and “Jewel” bonded instantly – and that her cats are beginning to tolerate the spunky pup as she chases them around the house, eager to play.

Meanwhile, AHS officials are confident that the 25 people who put their name on a list to adopt the puppy will rest assured that she is in a wonderful home.

“The consensus of the people who called was that they just wanted to be sure that she ended up in a loving home. We can guarantee them that she did,” said AHS Spokesperson Kim Noetzel. “We hope they understand that often there is a unique and special bond between an animal and the person who helped to save her life. Marissa and ‘Riley’ certainly share that bond.”

In addition, the AHS is currently taking in 3,900 unwanted, injured and abused animals every month – and they also need loving homes.

“We have plenty more puppies from which to choose – as well as dogs, cats, kittens and critters,” Noetzel said. “They may not have such a dramatic story of survival, but they are just as desperate to be adopted and equally deserving of loving, new homes.”

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August 5th, 2004, 05:28 PM
Oh, Heidiho! Thanks for sharing this news story. Such a horrible, horrible experience with such a great ending. I hope the animal-lovers in prison get that guy!

August 5th, 2004, 05:31 PM
That is what i think to,just how they hate child molesters.....I do love stories that end like that,cannot believe someone did that to a pup...Sick sick sick people that really should be beaten

August 5th, 2004, 06:03 PM
This is a definite case of an eye for an eye. I am so thrilled that this dog is in a loving home never to endure something so horrific again. I hope the samething happens a***** that did this.

August 5th, 2004, 06:21 PM
There was a pic of him,but i cant get it to copy..

August 6th, 2004, 08:39 AM
that makes me seriously SICK to my stomach. do people REALLY think that they can get away with all this stuff. I really admire people that rescue animals for a living, God bless them-- they have one of the hardest jobs- not a lot of people can do those things