Justice (the Dog)
Animal “activist”; Victim of crime.
Justice the dog is a 7-year-old 13 pound Patterdale terrier who was found on December 17, 2015 with his muzzle and paws bound with electrical tape in a field off of Walker Road in Windsor, Ontario; he had been left there to die. He was taken to the Windsor-Essex County Humane Society, where he was nursed back to health and re-socialized for adoption. He was successfully adopted in July of 2016 by a mother and daughter in Essex County who have remained anonymous in the hopes of giving Justice a normal life. His fame lives on in campaigns that bear his name and likeness, and he has become the symbol for justice in animal cruelty cases in this region.
There was a huge outcry from the community upon hearing of the brutality to this dog, and the owners came forward a couple of days later. Their newborn daughter had developed an allergy to the dog, so they had given an acquaintance $60, the fee to drop off an animal, and asked that the dog be taken to the local shelter. After finding out the fate of their dog through an outcry on social media, they turned Michael Earl Hill in to local authorities. He was denied bail and pled guilty to “causing unnecessary harm to an animal”, earning a 2 year stint in federal prison and a 25-year ban on owning or living with animals.
Like many other celebrities, Justice rose to fame via social media. There were calls for large numbers of animal supporters outside the courthouse on days when Hill was scheduled who were demanding “Justice for Justice”, a campaign that has stuck. In November 2016, the Humane Society unveiled a fundraising campaign centred on a small plush toy in the likeness of Justice… scar across the muzzle included. The funds raised by the campaign will go towards funding animal cruelty investigations.
ABC’s “Good Morning America” found the story and featured Justice and the stuffy campaign, and the initial run of stock was sold out quickly. The campaign is ongoing, on a pre-order basis, as the life and legend of Justice the Dog helps continue to spread the word about cruelty to animals.