‘Joseph’s Journey’ captures heart of Baton Rouge

All About Animals

POSTED: Tuesday, April 17, 2012 - 6:45pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, September 25, 2012 - 11:32am

Images in this story may be disturbing to some viewers.

A dog's journey to recover from a terrible case of neglect has captured the hearts of people across Baton Rouge.

Joseph, a mixed-breed dog, was found roaming the streets on Plank Road back at the beginning of March April. His condition was beyond emaciated. To many, it was a wonder that he even survived.

“We were shocked that he could even stand,” Jessica Card, Director for YELP, recalled. “He weighed in at 22 pounds when he was found. He should have weighed probably between 45-55 pounds.”

YELP is an organization that rescues animals from being euthanized by local shelters. Although a special case in that Joseph was taken in without being transferred from a shelter, there’s no doubt that he would have been put to sleep had he been taken by Animal Control.

“He’s become the spokes-dog for abused or neglected animals,” Card said. “When he came to us he was still sweet and loving – he just curled up in our laps and gave us kisses like nobody had ever mistreated him. For some reason he still trusts humans, even though he has every right not to.”

Joseph’s sweet disposition is what captured the hearts of so many, including his foster-owner Isabella Prehan.

“He’s so loving and I just hate to see him suffer,” she said.

Prehan has been fostering animals for several years. When she heard about Joseph, she immediately agreed to take him in, providing the supporting environment he needs to recover.

“His weight is doing really well,” she said with a smile. “He’s actually put on about 10 pounds already.”

But his recovery is far from over.

“The part that we’re worried about now is his liver – it’s destroyed from toxins.”

Several hundreds of dollars have already been spent on Joseph’s recovery, and now with the latest revelation about his liver and a possible surgery to correct the problem, another thousand is required. To make sure that Joseph gets every opportunity to survive, at least one local business has joined the cause to help generate the funds needed to move forward.

On Thursday, April 19, The Loft in Perkins Rowe will donate 20-percent of its sales to help pay for Joseph’s medical bills. That’s happening from 4:00 p.m. until they close.

The entire recovery process is being documented online by members of YELP. The page “Joseph’s Jorurney” has nearly two thousand followers already, proving that even though Joseph was abandoned, he’s not without those who care for his well-being.

If you would like to make a donation to Joseph or the general YELP! Fund, click here. If contributing specifically for Joseph, please write “Joseph’s Fund” in the notes. 

Comments News Comments

I saw the picture of Joseph and started to cry..ESPECIALLY after reading he was STILL giving kisses and just wanted to be loved..I can't even put into words what should be done to the sick monster responsible for that...I am TOTALLY speechless; just can't BELIEVE a human would do that...

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