Outpouring of support for 'Chico' after owner brutally beaten in North Sydney
There has been an outpouring of support for a man brutally beaten in North Sydney, N.S. earlier this month, as well as for his dog Chico.
Sydney SPCA manager Jeff Dursi says phones have been ringing off the hook at the shelter since Chico arrived.
“We’re getting calls, emails, Facebook messages from across the country and beyond, even into the United States,” says Dursi.
Chico’s owner, 48-year-old Shawn Curtis Jack, was attacked behind the Atlantic Superstore on King Street on July 14.
Jack sustained serious head injuries in the attack and was airlifted to a Halifax hospital, where he is still recovering.
Police say Jack is originally from the Truro area and often camps behind the store during the summer months with his dog.
Since the attack, people have come together to support Jack and Chico. More than $20,000 has been raised for Jack through an online fundraising website, and people have been dropping off food and toys for Chico at the Sydney SPCA.
“After something traumatizing like that, the dog needs attention, he needs love,” says SPCA co-op student Melissa Dawe. “But he’s been very happy since the day he got here.”
Dawe was at the SPCA when Chico arrived and she has spent a lot of time with him. She says it’s obvious Chico has been well loved.
“He seems very well socialized. You can walk him by dogs, he’s good with kids when they were around him and yeah, he was very good.”
Staff at the SPCA are eagerly awaiting the day when Chico can be reunited with his owner. They have even offered to drive the dog to Halifax, when the time is right.
“I think it would certainly be one of the shining moments for both of them, which would make it just an amazingly emotionally charged event,” says Dursi.
Dursi says it will still be awhile before Chico and Jack can be reunited, but he says staff will continue to care for the animal while his owner recovers.
“Quite frankly, he’s been a pleasure to have around,” says Dursi. “He has made many, many friends and stolen many hearts in this building.”
As for Jack, six people have been charged in connection with his assault.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Kyle Moore