LANCASTER COUNTY, PA - The dog appeared to be dead Monday morning, a passersby said. Chained outside a residence, the shepherd mix lying on his side in dirt and puddles had been unable to stand for several days, they said. A neighbor repeatedly called a Central Pennsylvania Humane Society officer charged with investigating animal abuse and neglect in the Altoona area. No one responded, the neighbor said. So the neighbor called Tammy Grimes. Then another person called Grimes about the same dog. Thats when Grimes took action, video camera in tow. By early Monday evening, the dog Grimes dubbed Doogie was resting inside a safe home after a $170 visit to a vet. After taking painkillers, vitamins, a hearty meal and water, he was even walking a little. That night, not unexpectedly, police came for Grimes. I couldnt possibly live with myself if I had left Doogie there, Grimes said Wednesday. I just had to make a call at that point: Am I going to do the right thing or be a coward? The fear of being arrested should not interfere with doing the right thing. Police in four cruisers showed up at her home about 9:30 p.m., she said. I didnt realize I was such a threat to society, Grimes said. They said I had to return the dog. I said, I cant do that. They started to cuff me. Grimes said she was transported by Freedom Township police to a station about 30 miles from her Tipton home near Altoona. After being charged with theft, receiving stolen property, criminal mischief and trespassing, and then being arraigned and processed, Grimes was released on $50,000 unsecured bail. The dogs owners say they didnt mistreat the animal. The matter immediately hit the airwaves. E-mails were fired across the country. Defense-fund donations rolled in. Altoona news stations aired the story. Celebrity animal-rights activists vowed to assist Grimes. Thats because Grimes is the well-connected founder of the national dog-protection organization Dogs Deserve Better. She will be a featured speaker Saturday at the annual Puppy Mill Awareness Day at Intercourse Community Park. Grimes group encourages pet owners to unchain dogs and integrate them into households. If that doesnt work, the group provides assistance to pet owners who agree to get fences so dogs dont have to be chained. About 5 percent of the time, owners simply relinquish ownership to the group, which finds foster and adoptive homes for them. When the group gets a call from the public about a chained dog, a letter is mailed to the pet owner about alternatives to chaining. About 2,000 letters go out each year through organization representatives across the country. On occasion, you get someone who does do the right thing, Grimes said. Our first choice is for them to keep the dog and take them inside. We offer fencing help. We try to address solutions to the problems. Dogs Deserve Better also lobbies for legislation that would limit how long animals can be chained outside. Pennsylvania House Bill 1911 would limit chaining to 16 hours in a 24-hour period. Connecticut already passed a similar law, and in California the legislation is awaiting the governors signature. Its stuck in committee right now, Grimes said of the legislation. But it will go somewhere eventually because we wont stop until it does. Its still a pretty bad law 16 hours a day. But its take this horrible improvement or no improvement. Dogs such as Doogie are the reason Grimes wants the legislation to pass. During Doogies visit to the veterinarian, the vet documented an enlarged heart, bone spurs that crippled the dog, a mass near his hip, malnourishment and sores on his body, Grimes said. Hes been tied outside his entire life, she said. But he couldnt get up for three days. Hes obviously very old. I dont know how long he has left, but hes doing surprisingly well now. Doogies story comes as some of the nations most dogged animal-rights advocates plan a weekend of events in Lancaster County, including the annual Puppy Mill Awareness Day, which has drawn heavy-metal rocker Rikki Rockett of Poison fame, actress Linda Blair and actor Chris DeRose. Doogie wont be on hand at the weekends events hes resting at an undisclosed house but Grimes fully expects to make her scheduled appearance. Its not known whether further charges will be filed in the matter. Calls made to Central Pennsylvania Humane Society, the humane society cruelty officer and the arresting police department were not returned. Attempts to reach the dogs owners also were unsuccessful. Meanwhile, the dogs family says they want him back. In an interview with the Altoona Mirror, Steve and Lori Arnold of East Freedom said they never abused the dog and they planned to euthanize 19-year-old Jake. But do you know how hard that is to do? Lori Arnold told the Mirror. I just want my dog back, Steve Arnold was quoted in Wednesdays edition of the Mirror. Hes part of my family, and the judge just let (Grimes) go. Grimes friends are searching for a lawyer versed in animal rights to represent her. She said she was surprised the Arnolds called police about the dogs disappearance. I was really banking on them not saying anything because they might get in trouble, Grimes said. If I had let my dog lay in the dirt for two days and someone took him on the third day, I wouldnt be asking any questions. Im floored they had the nerve to go to the police and say someone took their dog. Here a link to some pictures and the video she took of the dog trying to get up. IFAW's Animal Rescue Blog: Dog's Hero Placed Behind Bars My question is...would you do the same? If you saw some poor dog like this one suffering, and it was extremely obvious that dog was neglected in every way, and the owners did not love or care for it...would you risk the fine, or risk being put in jail?