Officer Rick Broz has been tirelessly safeguarding the welfare of animals in Lorain, Ohio for more than 8 years now. Thanks to his efforts, many lost dogs have found their way back to their homes and families, and he has also advocated for stronger laws against animal abuse.
He has also demonstrated his passion for animal welfare by rescuing neglected and mistreated dogs. One of his most notable rescues is Herbie, a Pit Bull mix whom he found outside an abandoned home after the police received an anonymous call. Herbie’s story was first published on DogFull in 2013. Upon seeing Herbie, Patrolman Rick Broz, fondly known as Doc among his peers, was taken aback and thought he had never seen such a malnourished dog still alive in his life. The frail pup was lying on the ground, unable to move, with one eye blind and a fractured skull. He also had a severe inflammation in his head. In his police report, Officer Broz vividly described Herbie’s condition, stating that “every rib, vertebrae, and leg bone could be plainly observed beneath its skin.” A dog of his breed should weigh at least 75 pounds, but Herbie weighed only around 25 to 30 pounds. Furthermore, the infection had caused his eyelids to close. Yellow-green pus was discharging from both his eyes.
Officer Broz brought the dog to Lorain Animal Clinic, where they gave him the name Herbie and immediately started emergency treatment due to his poor condition. Although his recovery was uncertain, the swelling in his head decreased and his appetite slowly returned within a few days. After a week and a half, he gained some weight back and enjoyed going outside, wagging his tail happily. Unfortunately, after Christmas, Herbie was diagnosed with adenocarcinoma, a non-operable and non-responsive cancer. Despite this news, he is still happy, eating well, and pain-free during his walks outside. The clinic staff stated that Herbie’s cancer has not yet affected his quality of life, but he cannot be adopted due to his condition.
During his stay at the clinic, Officer Broz has been actively monitoring Herbie’s progress and bonding with him. The clinic staff has acknowledged that Herbie has developed a close relationship with his rescuer. It seems that Officer Broz is entirely smitten with Herbie!
Currently, Herbie spends his weekdays at Dr. Woods’ facility, and on weekends, he eagerly awaits Officer Broz’s visits. Every Friday, the two have their special bonding time, showering each other with love and affection.
Officer Broz provides regular updates about Herbie on a Facebook group page dedicated to him. During a recent weekend trip, Officer Broz shared that Herbie was back at his house and resting comfortably in his bed. Herbie appeared to be excited when he realized Officer Broz was there at the clinic to pick him up. The spoiling seemed to have worked as Herbie had been more active during the last few days. During the ride home, Herbie kept getting up and looking around out of restlessness. However, he felt completely at ease in Officer Broz’s house and climbed into his freshly laundered bed to lie down. After some rest and food, they planned to hang out in the Man Cave, drink a few beers, watch NASCAR, and do things guys typically do. Later, they watched the Super Bowl together and even caught The Puppy Bowl. Herbie got vocal whenever the referee made what he thought to be a bad call, as per Officer Broz.
According to Officer Broz, he plans to maintain a warm and affectionate environment for Herbie while taking things one day at a time. It is unknown how much time the dog has left, be it days or months. However, as long as Herbie stays content, without pain, eats well, maintains his weight, and doesn’t show any signs of the cancer affecting his mental state, Officer Broz will continue to care for him.
When Herbie was rescued, a reward of $11,000 was offered for any information leading to the person responsible for his abuse and neglect. Herbie was discovered in front of an abandoned house on West 11th street in Lorain, Ohio on December 1, 2012. In addition to Herbie’s case, animal lovers are advocating for stricter animal cruelty laws in Ohio. The Nitro Foundation website provides more information about the failed Nitro’s Law bill and the importance of stronger laws to protect dogs like Herbie. Unfortunately, Herbie passed away on March 1, 2013, but Officer Rick “Doc” Broz was recently awarded the Humane Society of the United States Humane Law Enforcement Award 2018 for his efforts to help and protect animals, especially dogs, in Lorain County. Many people in the DogHeirs community expressed gratitude for Officer Broz’s compassion and care for Herbie, and they hope that Herbie has found peace at the Rainbow Bridge.