Diamond was in the rough.
Whatever humans had taken in the pit bull mix as part of their pack weren’t able — or willing — to keep up their end of the deal.
So Sunday afternoon, they tied Diamond by her leash to the railing of a home in East Falls, just 30 feet from the train station on the 3600 block of Midvale Avenue.
They left her with three slices of pizza in a plastic bag and put a note under the front door mat that read: “Please take me home. I’m a girl named Diamond. We can no longer keep her in our home. Thank you.”
Then, they left.
Around 2 p.m., Justin Hanley opened his living-room blinds to let in some fresh air. That’s when he noticed Diamond tied to his steps. He went out and found the note and pizza, too.
“Clearly, if somebody is feeding a dog pizza they weren’t equipped to handle a dog in the first place,” Hanley, 34, said.
Hanley and his wife took Diamond to their back patio.
“She was skittish at first, but super sweet,” he said.
But with two young children, ages 2 years and 5 months, and a 3-year-old pug-and-Jack Russell mix named Beefy, the family couldn’t take on another dog.
So Hanley went to the East Falls Rant Your A$$ Off community Facebook group, which he’s been a member of for two years, and posted photos of Diamond with a caption that read: “Need advice/help. Somebody tied up their dog and abandoned her on my front step, with a note (attached) and a bag of pizza. Who handles abandoned/lost dogs? spca?? This is heartbreaking stuff.”
The responses — more than 150 comments and messages — began flooding in. By 5:30 p.m., Diamond’s tale got a happy ending and she got a new home with the friend of a member of the Facebook group who responded to Hanley’s post.
“It definitely restored my faith in humanity,” he said.
In East Falls, dog owners tend to know other pet owners by their four-legged friends’ names, instead of the person’s own, Hanley said. Nobody in the neighborhood recognized the abandoned puppy, but the fact that so many were willing to help her is a testament to the community, he said. While the Facebook page’s name suggests it’s a place to spew rants, Hanley said, the group is much more than that.
“The feedback on the page is almost instantaneous, whether you’re connecting a lost pet with an owner, reporting suspicious activity or lending a helping hand,” Hanley said. “It has a neat community feel. The rants are few and far between, but when there are rants, they are good.”
What you should do if you find an abandoned animal
Gillian Kocher, spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania SPCA, urged people to call the PSPCA’s animal cruelty hotline at 866-601-7722 if they find an abandoned animal.
“Our Humane Law Enforcement officers can respond to the call, or provide additional insight as to what the next steps are,” she said. “We would recommend not taking the animal as a Good Samaritan, but rather allowing our officers to do their job in responding and investigating the case.”
Kocher said animal abandonment is a crime and if found, the owners will face penalties, which vary depending on the condition of the animal.