"I would love to get another dog in the future," he said in an interview
. "I think it would be a big step for me in the rehabilitation process. I think just to have a pet in my household and to show people that I genuinely care, and my love, and my passion for animals."
With less than a year under his belt after serving 18 months in prison on a dogfighting conviction, Vick has plenty of detractors who say he should never own a dog again. But Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the United States, backs up the Philadelphia Eagles QB. "I have been around him a lot, and feel confident that he would do a good job as a pet owner," he said, referencing Vick's work with the organization to curb the cruel sport of dogfighting.
Fast-forward nearly two years, and Vick has made it official that he and his family are dog owners. The 32-year-old had been keeping the new family member under wraps, but had his cover blown last week after he tweeted (and then deleted) a photo
that revealed a box of Milk Bones on the kitchen table. Yesterday, he came clean.
‘‘I understand the strong emotions by some people about our family’s decision to care for a pet,’’ Vick said in a statement.
‘‘As a father, it is important to make sure my children develop a healthy relationship with animals. I want to ensure that my children establish a loving bond and treat all of God’s creatures with kindness and respect. Our pet is well cared for and loved as a member of our family.’’
While the Humane Society of the United States has yet to comment on Vick's new dog, plenty of other people have — both positively and negatively.
"If Vick is truly honest about what he is saying, then I wish him and their new family pet the best," wrote one commenter on ESPN
. "All children should learn to love and respect animals; they should also love and respect others."
"Michael Vick is a sociopath who tortured animals by smashing them, electrocuting, drowning, shooting, and burning, them he watched them die painful, slow deaths," condemned another on BleacherReport
. "He enjoyed this and did it for six years until he got caught. This is not a role model."
Where do you stand on Vick's decision to own a dog? Let us know below!
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