Niko Supporters Protest Outside SPCA Over Dog's Impending Euthanization

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outside CASPCA outside CASPCA

Protesters in Albemarle County are taking a stand to save a pitbull named Niko from being put down. He is to be euthanized this week after he was accused of killing a cat in December of 2014.

Protesters stood outside the Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA where Niko is held by animal control. Supporters say they are doing everything they can to give the dog a second chance at life.

They chanted "Let Niko Go" and "Honk for Niko." Their signs read things like "Justice 4 Niko" and "Would the outcome be the same if Niko was not a pit?"

“I want people to know that he is not a vicious dog by any means what so ever, there’s not a vicious bone in his body," Toni Stacy, Niko’s owner, said.

Stacy and Audrey Wells say their dog does not deserve to die.

"He's my daughter’s best friend, in the basement he had a big comforter that he slept on and she would put socks on and pull it across the room and he would run after her and get it and pull her all around the basement with it , he wonderful,” Wells said.

Jennifer Garrison says she owns the same kind of dog as Niko, a 4-year-old Staffordshire terrier.

"She's very loving, she's a lap dog, she's a bed hog, she's a cover hog she's just a great dog, Garrison said."

People brought their pets to the protest. Like Garrison, they're trying to show that pitbulls and Staffordshire terriers can be friendly breeds.

“I just think he's got a bad rep wrong place, wrong time, wrong judge, wrong everything,” Garrison said.

Niko's owners are hoping a judge will send the dog to a New-York based animal welfare organization instead of ordering his killing. They got to see him Sunday but are hoping this isn't the final goodbye.

"I'm praying that it isn't the final one because if it is I'll be devastated because he's a good dog he doesn't deserve this," Wells said.

"I know that I can’t take him home, I just want him to be able to go to this rescue and live his life," Stacy said.

Originally Niko was set to be euthanized Sunday. Owners believe the date will get pushed to later this week. They filed an injunction in Albemarle County Circuit Court on Friday.

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