One of last dogs saved from Michael Vick’s cruelty dies

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One of the last dogs saved from Michael Vick’s dog fighting ring of egregious cruelty has died. The American Staffordshire terrier named Lyla was 15 1/2 years old – a great age to achieve for any dog, but extra special of a dog that survived the infamous dog fighting ring at Bad Newz Kennels.

According to the Best Friends Animal Society, had been adopted by then interning volunteer, Tess Rushton who cooked organic food into her kibble and made toys with hidden treats to keep Layla’s mind busy. For six years the two vacationed and volunteered together.

“We played it pretty low key in our lives because I really did just want her to be a dog and stay in her comfort zone, and just live her life,” Tess told “But I also didn’t feel like I’d pass up an opportunity to help educate people about dogs that experienced the kind of things that she did.”

Layla was one of the 22 “Vicktory dogs” rehabilitated at Best Friends Animal Society in Kanab, Utah. It took five years for Layla to earn her purple collar – passing her Canine Good Citizen test and thus available for adoption.

Sadly, as so many great things come to an end, Layla’s health declined on June 21 when her family made the difficult decision to end her suffering. And now Layla is out of pain, but will remain that shining star of forgiveness towards the evil of some men hardly worth mentioning anymore except to remind us how good overcomes evil.

The Vicktory dogs brought awareness to the public perception of fighting dogs and pit bulls. Some went on to be therapy dogs, agility champions and ambassadors. It’s not the dogs – it’s the people who train them. It is hoped Layla’s legacy will be one of understanding and inspiration for all pit bull type of dogs.

Three of the dogs – Mya, Meryl and Curly still live at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary; others although climbing in age still live in loving homes after they were adopted. No matter – the dogs’ memories will live on and perhaps – just perhaps, humans will one day appreciate all that our best friends offer.

Rest in peace sweet one.

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2 replies
  1. Janet Barnes says:

    Join the other angels, sweetheart Layla! Only the brainless and heartless lack appreciation for the “never ending” gifts our best friends offer!

  2. Barkley's Mom says:

    Rest in peace sweet Lyla, my sincere condolences to your family I know how much you will be missed.


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