Utica, NY (WIBX) - The benefit at the Electric Company for the Pitt Bull that was left out in freezing temperatures nearly two weeks ago was a success organizers say. Several local musicians came together with the owner of the music tavern, after the story made headlines, to put on the benefit to help raise money for his veterinary bills.

Jerry Kraus, Public Relations and Marketing Director at the Stevens-Swan Humane Society--the group who now has ownership of the dog and named him Apollo--says his story is also raising awareness about animal cruelty. Kraus said, "What we're seeing is, people are really keeping their eyes open for other cases of animal abuse now that the Apollo case has been in the media."

Kraus said the Society is witnessing an increase of reports about possible animal cruelty. He said people are even calling Animal Control Officers to go out and investigate what might be other cases of abuse in our area. "So, that's a positive from what started off as a very sad negative. It turns out that Apollo is getting better and so are community minded people and humane pet advocates, for keeping an eye out for other cases of abuse," he said.

The benefit at the Electric Company on Varrick Street in Utica raised $1,018 that will go toward assisting the Stevens-Swan Humane Society cover Apollo's rehabilitation costs. The benefit was the brain child of local musician, John Leibing who contacted Anthony "Zee" Donaldson, the owner of the music tavern, about hosting the event. Jay Schnitt, Jason Brady and Paul Case were the other local musicians who performed during the benefit last night. According to Kraus, another benefit is being organized by the owner of M and O Bar on 1116 Whitesboro Street, the location where the dog was found tied up outside.