It took neighbors days to convince him otherwise, and gradually coax him from a makeshift cardboard box to a truck to an animal hospital and, finally, to a rescue organization.
And many days more to prove to him that his owner wasn't worth the trouble.
The Dodo first reported on the dog neighbors called Joey in January. His misplaced faith in an errant owner broke hearts the world over - but most immediately, in the neighborhood where he held the saddest vigil, waiting for a ride that never came.
"We go out there every day," resident Julian Rovito told The Dodo in January. "We're feeding him. We're trying to get him to trust us. The next step is to get him a crate. Put him in there and take him to my vet."