The "Save Buddy" Legal Fund

For: Buddy, the Golden Retriever mix
Organizer: Advocates for San Antonio Pets (ASAP)
The "Save Buddy" Legal Fund (Buddy, the Golden Retriever mix)
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Raised by 113 donors
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The Story

A 6-year-old Golden Retriever mix named Buddy has been unjustly sentenced to death by Judge Daniel Guerrero of Municipal Court No. 4 despite a complete lack of evidence that he caused “serious” injuries” (as required by law). The dog, who is the constant loyal companion of an 83-year-old man, has no history of aggression and is known and loved by many as a sweet, well-trained dog.

Both Buddy’s owner and the 9-year-old alleged victim’s mother were within 2-3 feet of the girl and Buddy – yet BOTH testified at the hearing that they did not actually see Buddy bite the girl. Although the evidence at the hearing showed that Buddy may have jumped up and scratched a 9-year-old girl (whose mother was not preventing her from yelling in Buddy’s face), her injuries could not be shown to be serious or permanent. The law requires serious ripping and tearing of muscle to allow the judge to euthanize a dog. However, Judge Guerrero refused to allow Buddy’s owners to have the victim’s “injuries” examined by an independent medical examiner, refused to allow a dog behavior assessment and dog bite analysis to be done, and refused to allow for a jury trial.

While we feel for the girl, she has made a full recovery. Even her father admitted on the evening news that she had made a full physical recovery only a month after the incident. Buddy should not have to pay for this with his life.

Buddy’s attorney, Michelle Maloney, has obtained a Temporary Restraining Order giving Buddy a stay of execution pending exhaustion of all appellate remedies. In the meantime,  boarding fees of $30/day are mounting up at San Antonio’s Animal Care Services as Buddy has been held there since Nov 1, 2013 (and not allowed visitation by his family). Legal expenses are also accruing.

Please also sign the petition to District Court Judge Tina Torres, City Attorney Robbie Greenblum, and Mayor Castro to STOP THIS INJUSTICE!

If you can help Buddy obtain justice and also help his family continue their fight to keep Buddy alive, please make a donation however large or small.

(Unless otherwise instructed by the donor, should donations exceed actual costs, any excess will be used for the next dog in need of justice.)

Buddy and his family thank you!

Media coverage of Buddy's hearing on Nov 18, 2013:

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on January 26, 2014

Posted on January 26, 2014

City of San Antonio releases 'Buddy the Dog' to his owners

Credit: Buddy's owners

by Andrew Delgado / KENS 5

Bio | Email | Follow: @ErandeTX

Posted on January 25, 2014 at 2:55 PM

Updated today at 8:19 PM

SAN ANTONIO -- Local activists and pet lovers have something to celebrate this weekend: 'Buddy the Dog' is back in the loving arms of his owners.

Buddy was released Saturday morning from a veterinarian who had been caring for the dog since Jan. 16, when a judge ordered Buddy to be released from Animal Care Services.

The Golden-Retriever mix and his owners, Homer and Kathryn Mojica, will not return to their apartment, however -- the same apartment complex where Buddy allegedly attacked a 9-year-old girl last year. Instead, the elderly couple and their pooch are staying with someone in a private home that was approved by ACS while they search for a new residence.

Under the settlement that was reached between Buddy's owners and the city, the Mojicas must move to another home -- just one of several restrictions placed on Buddy via the agreement with the city.

Michelle Maloney, who legally represented the Mojicas, said Buddy's new address would not be disclosed to the public, in order to protect the privacy of his owners. Maloney said the couple fears retaliation and would like nothing more than to move forward.

Updated photos of Buddy are expected to be released soon.

Posted on January 25, 2014

Posted on January 25, 2014

Buddy the Dog free to reunite with owner

By Vincent T. Davis, San Antonio Express-News : January 24, 2014

SAN ANTONIO — Buddy the Dog's long wait to be reunited with his owner is just about over.

About 6:30 p.m. Friday, Animal Care Services spokeswoman Lisa Norwood said the agency completed an inspection of the dog owner's new home and it successfully met all of the requirements of the agreement to release the 6-year-old golden retriever mix.

Buddy and Homer Mojica, his 83-year-old owner, have been apart since early November, when Judge Daniel Guerrero ordered the dog's euthanization for attacking a 9-year-old girl at a Northwest Side apartment complex in November.

Mojica said the dog was startled by the little girl when she screamed at him. But the girls' parents say the attack was unprovoked and required stitches and surgery to her face.

Last week, after weeks of negotiations between Mojica's attorney, Michelle Maloney, and city officials, the city agreed to release Buddy to the custody of Mojica's veterinarian until the last details of his release were finalized.

ACS is not releasing the new location to where the canine will be released.

“The terms of the settlement necessary for the release of Buddy were successfully abided by,” Norwood said.

But it was unclear Friday night if Buddy and his owner had already been reunited.

“It is our understanding they have free access to Buddy,” Norwood said.

The saga of Buddy the Dog comes to a close after days of supporters questioning why the canine hadn't already been released to his owner.

While negotiations were underway, more than 6,000 people signed an online petition for the dog's release. Supporters held a “Send Buddy Home,” rally Saturday at Alamo Plaza, seeking a change to the state law of “serious bodily injury,” and language, which allows dogs to be euthanized if they cause an injury resulting in severe bite wounds or severe ripping and tearing of muscle.

The girl's parents said their daughter suffered a torn eye duct, a gash on her cheek and a cut on the corner of her lip. They said she received 100 stitches to her cuts and a tear duct had to be mended during an hour and a half surgery.

As Mojica's attorney and city officials worked on the agreement, Mayor Julián Castro said “he believed an agreement could be reached that would allow Buddy to live.”

Even after the city backed down on their plans to euthanize them, it's taken almost a week to actually release him.

In an email on Thursday, animal activist John Bachman said ACS has been reminded of a paragraph that states the city agreed to release Buddy upon signature of the agreement.

“It seems apparent that the city, at least Animal Care Services and the city attorney's office cannot be relied on to act in good faith in this matter,” Bachman said. “This is not some contest and should not be treated as such.”

Norwood said they were waiting for the owner to meet the requirements of the agreement, which would address keeping the public safe from possible future incidents. Once all terms of the settlement were met, she said, ACS would release Buddy.

Norwood said the sticking point was where Buddy's owner new home would be. Supporters said management at Mojica's old apartment complex notified him that Buddy would not be allowed to return to the property.

“It's our understanding that the Mojicas' are in the process of looking to relocate, so once they do so, we'd be happy to schedule an inspection for them,” Norwood said, before Buddy's release. “We can come to their apartment, duplex or house, whatever the case may be. We want to do an inspection of the location to ensure not only that the location is secure, but to again make sure there's not going to be future events.”

Norwood said the agreement detailed several restrictions to be completed before Buddy could be released back to Mojica. Terms of the settlement for Mojica and his wife, Kathryn included: Buddy being kept in a secure enclosure when not on a leash, muzzled when outdoors and kept on a leash no longer than 6 feet when in public. As Buddy's owners, the Mojicas will have to keep liability insurance of $100,000 as long as he's their dog.

[email protected]

Posted on January 17, 2014

Posted on January 17, 2014

Buddy the dog released to veterinarian


Posted on January 16, 2014 at 4:57 PM

SAN ANTONIO --  Buddy the dog has been released to a veterinarian. 

The dog had been in Animal Care Services since November after a girl said the dog attacked her at a local apartment. 

A judge ruled in December the dog should be euthanized. 

Lawyers for Buddy's owners filed a temporary restraining order while an appeal on the decision is pursued. 

The dog was released to a veterinarian and the city said it will continue to discuss a possible resolution with the owner of the dog. 

The city also said the move is to ensure public safety pending an appeal by the dog's owner.

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