Vicktory dog Georgia says goodbye

The much-loved pitbull Georgia, from the Michael Vick dogfighting bust, passes away, leaving a legacy of love and hope.
By Kelli Harmon

Georgia, one of the most well-known and loved of the dogs that Best Friends took in from the Michael Vick dogfighting case, lost her battle with kidney failure yesterday. She knew two happy years in a home with her adopter, Amy, who contacted Best Friends to share the news with the many people who loved Georgia. The list of Georgia's fans is long, especially after her many television appearances, where her sweet-as-pie demeanor and silly, wrinkled face were impossible to ignore. To honor Georgia, we'd like to share words from some of the people who knew her best.

Georgia the Victory dogAmy, Georgia's adopter

To all who loved Georgia,

I am so sorry and sad to report that our girl has left us. I kept hoping that she would be able to turn things around one last time with her strong will to live, but it was her time to go, and she let me know she was ready. She died peacefully with me by her side with the help of a wonderful vet. She couldn't have been any sweeter to me, trying to give me kisses up until the very end.

Our time together went all too fast, but it was long enough for her to know how very much she was loved. It was truly such a privilege to have Georgia by my side and to take care of her in her golden years. One of her initial evaluators, Tim Racer, said that he admired Georgia because she made the best of her situation - I will always remember that and try to make the best of each day and help other dogs like her to honor her.

Despite all that Georgia endured, including a broken jaw and broken tail, her spirit could not be broken, and that beautiful spirit will always be with me.

I've always loved the quote "Rescuing one animal may not change the world, but for that animal, their world is changed forever!" Thank you to our girl, Georgia - you certainly changed my world forever!

Georgia the former Michael Vick dog with John GarciaJohn Garcia, trainer

All of these dogs not only changed public perception but also influenced the world, and as a result have saved thousands of lives. I can't ask for a bigger honor than to be a part of that. It's people like Georgia's mom, Amy, and the adopters of the other Vicktory dogs who are doing the second half of this truly inspirational work by opening their homes and hearts to give them that chance they deserve.

Kathy Moore, caregiver

When I think about Georgia, I always smile. I completely fell in love with her and developed such a strong relationship with her. She was so full of joy and such a gift. She was goofy and stubborn and sweet. She loved thunderstorms. When lightning hit, she would take off running, chasing the thunder and trying to catch the rain in her mouth. She loved string cheese. She loved to play chase. She loved her stuffed animals. She loved to sleep late in the mornings.

She loved dumping her water bucket and running around with it on her head. I would come in early in the morning, hear a hollow-sounding bark and think, "Yup, she did it again!" We tried hanging her bucket on a hook, hanging it on a carabiner bolted to the wall and putting it in a specially made brick box. We finally ended up putting it in the brick box and hooking it to a carabiner and bolting that to the wall. Part of the fun was seeing her outsmart us time and again.

Georgia had to overcome some big obstacles before finding her forever home. Meeting the court-ordered requirement of passing her Canine Good Citizen test seemed like such an uphill battle. When she passed, she could finally go home. It was a significant achievement for other dogs from dogfight busts, fight rings and abusive situations. By achieving this goal, she paved the way for other dogs to be saved. She was proof. She did it.

Georgia the Vicktory dog in a sunsetAmy was the right person for Georgia. She found a beautiful balance between educating people by sharing Georgia's background and letting Georgia just be herself. We kept in touch, and it was so special watching Amy fall completely in love with Georgia through the emails, photos and updates. I knew exactly how she felt. Once you fell in love with Georgia, you were a goner. And Georgia loved her back just as much. We are going to miss that girl so much, but I will always be so thankful to Amy for the ways she took care of Georgia and how special she made Georgia's life. I will miss Georgia so much, but really she's still with us, in thunderstorms, in string cheese, in the dogs out there who still need our help. 

Read about Georgia's passing on the Best Friends blog.

We know that Georgia was loved by many. Please share your own Georgia remembrances in our comments section.

Photos by Best Friends staff