MENANDS, N.Y. – The Mohawk Hudson Humane Society has been awarded a $25,000 Petco Foundation and @Ellen Degeneres grant, all thanks to two local dogs with an extraordinary story.
There were 4,500 entries for the Holiday Wishes grants and the Society's story of the "Railroad Puppies" was in the top eight.
On September 8, 2012, three puppies were found on the railroad tracks at North Pearl Street in Albany with severe injuries to their left rear paws. Hudson and Pearl survived and are in new homes enjoying life. Hudson was fitted with his first prosthetic paw in November 2012 and received his fifth prosthetic paw in October of this year.
According to the Petco Foundation, they were overwhelmed by the response to this campaign and the incredible volume of applications prompted them to increase the total grant money awarded. All of these well-deserving groups, as well as the soon-to-be-announced $100,000 grand prize winner, will receive the grants just in time to make holiday wishes to save more lives come true this year.
"We are very pleased and excited. We had such support as the story unfolded: wonderful media coverage, widespread community support and participation, fantastic cooperation from Hudson and Pearl's adoptive parents and, of course, wonderful photos thanks to photographer John Norton. The story and the puppies captured the hearts of the Capital Region and beyond," said Brad Shear, MHHS Executive Director.
Anthony Walker, 31, of Albany, pleaded guilty in connection to the abuse of the "Railroad Puppies" and a separate animal abuse case in which the animals were deemed, "U-Haul Dogs." He was sentenced to five years of felony probation and no longer allowed to possess or reside with animals. In August he was sentenced to six months in prison, but because he had already served eight months, he walked out of court a free man.
On August 21, NEWS10 ABC discovered Walker was living with a dog - his mother's dog "Bella" - despite the ban on owning pets. A judge allowed Walker to live with Bella, including a handwritten court order as an "exception."