When NYPD Officer Michael Pascale first encountered Joey, it was a chilly, wet afternoon. He was driving through a public park in his squad car when he noticed a little black dog crouched amid the discarded needles and shattered beer bottles.
Officer Pascale noticed that the dog was tethered to a fence by a strong chain around his neck. Joey was drenched, shivering, and obviously abandoned.
"He's just looking up at me with these 'Help Me' eyes," Pascale explained to The Dodo. "The first thing that sprang to me was that I needed to get him out of here."
From Lost & Wet To Safe & Dry
Joey was taken to the Animal Care Centers of NYC shelter in Brooklyn by the animal-loving officer. He could feel a particular relationship forming between them as he dried the thankful dog with a towel.
"I don't see an animal," Pascale explained. "I notice a soul. And that is not something I avoid."
72 Hours Feels Like A Lifetime
Officer Pascale was advised by the ACC that Joey would have to remain in their custody for a mandated 72-hour stray hold. No matter how neglected or mistreated an animal looks to be, there might be a distressed owner looking for them. A stray hold gives them time to find their missing or stolen pet and come forward.
Officer Pascale promised to return after the newly connected duo had a painful goodbye. He kept his pledge and returned the next day — and the day after that. They became closer with each visit.
Finally, the stray hold was lifted, and Pascale was free to adopt Joey. When the paperwork was finished, Joey was taken out to say goodbye to Pascale.
Officer Pascale swore to keep him safe and never let him experience cruelty or neglect again as the joyful dog showered him with kisses. They then returned home to start their new life together.
A Perfectly Imperfect Ending
Where there was once a hungry, fearful stray, there is now a powerful, valued pet. Joey enjoys touring New York with his father and cuddling on the couch with his mother. Officer Pascale notes that he has developed into quite the Mama's Boy.
Joey is a nice dog — in fact, his Instagram account is @Joey Good Doggo — but he's not perfect. He gets into the garbage on occasion, and he still dislikes going outdoors in the rain, but he is content. And he is well-liked.
And that is all any puppy truly desires.