Police Officer Saves Pit Bull’s Life in The Most Loving Way

Other police officers may have reached for their guns if they came across a pit bull who’d been shot in the face, doused with bleach and left for dead. But not Tim Elliott, an officer with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department who always keeps dog treats and leashes in his patrol car.

On May 9, Elliott was flagged down by someone as he drove past a post office. Inside, cowering in a corner, was the pit bull.

“When I actually came in there, he wagged his tail, got up and came to me, and then just kind of collapsed by my legs,” Elliott told the Indianapolis Star. He and his fellow officers rushed the dog to the closest emergency animal hospital.

For many police officers, the story would probably have ended right there, but this wasn’t the case with Elliott. He couldn’t stop thinking about that poor dog. When he and his wife Tiffany, a paramedic, went to visit him at the animal hospital the next day, they decided to foster him and help nurse him back to health.

“Still alive and wagging his tail, Tim and Tiffany couldn’t let this little guy perish at the hands of a savage criminal owner,” said Wayne Township Fire Department Captain Mike Pruitt.

The dog, who was now named Winks because he sadly lost his left eye, had to undergo three surgeries. As he recovered, Elliot and his wife hand-fed him and administered his eye drops and other medications. Winks had to be rushed back to the emergency hospital one night when he had difficulty breathing due to the bullets lodged in his neck.

“Why would anybody do this to an animal?” Elliott told the Indianapolis Star. “Even if it is ‘aggressive’ or ‘mean,’ as everybody calls in and says, they do still have a soft spot. Like people, you’ve just got to find what they like and build from there.”

A GoFundMe campaign has raised over $7,500 to pay Winks’ veterinary bills. “I can’t think of a worthier cause than to help out two HEROs who put their lives on the line every day and who are so compassionate they couldn’t let Winks suffer anymore,” wrote Stephen Fippen, who started the campaign. Elliott told the Indianapolis Star that whatever funds are left over will be donated to Indianapolis Animal Care Services.

This isn’t the first pet the Elliotts have saved. They have a rescued German shepherd, another pit bull and two cats.

The best news is that Winks has now joined them all as a permanent member of the Elliott family. The truth is that the couple knew they’d be “foster failures” the day Winks first walked into their house.

“We knew we were going to adopt him as soon as we brought him home,” Elliott told the Indianapolis Star, “because he made this his house. … He pretty much made the decision before we did.”

Elliott said that he and his partners average about two calls every day regarding stray dogs. In many cases, Elliott will drive the dog to animal control himself, or if that department is too busy, the dog will ride along with him in his patrol car until they can pick him up.

It’s a very troubling statistic that a dog is shot and killed by a law enforcement officer every 98 minutes in the United States, and many of those dogs are pit bulls. But isn’t it heartening to know there are good cops like Elliott out there who prefer to reach for a treat instead of their gun?

Photo credit: Tim & Tiffany's 4-legged Hero!!/GoFundMe.com


Marilyn L
Marilyn J. L4 months ago

So often it's the animal who chooses us before we realize we're choosing them.

Pat P
Pat P4 months ago

If there were only more police officers like Tim Elliott--there would be a lot more kindness and lives saved--for both human and non-human animals! His behavior is more than admirable--it is a sane and rare compassion shown by law enforcement and persons. in general. Thanks to all of the kind people who helped this poor tortured dog Winks find a new well-deserved life and remind us that despite all the horrifying animal cruelty--there are still those with empathy who really care!

Ruth S
Ruth S4 months ago


Georgina M
Georgina Elizab M4 months ago

Isn't it nice to know that out there good people exist?

Karen N
Karen N4 months ago

Thank goodness Officer Tim Elliot was there for the dog and not the usual trigger happy barbarian officer(s)! . . . This is what the 'real' men of the world do, they show compassion and respect for all life regardless of species, they help and protect them . . . unlike the pathetic and cowardly ones who seem to think it is macho to exploit, harm and murder them. It is not animals we should fear, it is the lowlife evil scum that exploit abuse, harm and murder them that we should fear . . . So glad this had a happy ending for Winks thanks to Tim and Tiffany Elliott.

Nicole H
Nicole Heindryckx4 months ago

Just forgot about Stephen Fippen, the man who started the campaign to raise money for the vet treatment Wink needed so badly. This man may not be forgotten either. Thanks to him, and ALL the nice people who donated, even only $ 1.00, should not be forgotten. Mr. Elliot and his wife certainly would have brought the dog to a ver too, even if there had been no fund raising.
Anyway, it was a great idea to start this up, and many people who donated did avoid a financial burden on the shoulders of this young couple, who already adopted dogs and cats in the past.

oliver mally
oliver mally4 months ago


Nicole Heindryckx
Nicole Heindryckx4 months ago

Real hartwarming !! My respect to this Police Officer who NOT ONLY saved his live, but also adopted him. And only God knows what this animal had to endure already before this. There should be more like him. He's a real good example of how cops are to be treating dogs - even pit bulls - instead of gunning them down. The latter all are cowards. Still believing the pitbulls are a dangerous breed, and better kill them than help them...
Some of you may think it's ridiculous, but I will have a good prayer for this dog and the adoptant family. Hope winks will have a very long happy live with them.

To ALL other Police Officers, in the WHOLE U.S.A. I beg : take this as a good example and do the same thing the next time you are involved in a situation with a dog, especially a pitbull. Thanks.

For the "nice" guy who shot the dog : I hope they will find him and lifetime jail (no parool) will just be enough for him !!

dawn bramed
dawn bramed4 months ago

Simply the best Elliott family,the best.
Thank you for your kindness. Wish all people were as kind to animals as you.

dawn bramed
dawn bramed4 months ago

YOU are simply the BEST Elliot family, the best.
That truly is kindness only wish many more people were this kind