(USA TODAY) -- Now that he'll be staying with the Philadelphia Eagles for at least one more season,Michael Vick can spend the next few months doing what any suburban dadwould do with a little bit of free time on his hands as springapproaches. He could work on his golf game, take the kids to Dave &Busters, maybe head over to Lowe's to get a head start on the gardening.
In Vick's case, one of those activities happens to be signing up fordog training classes at a local PetSmart, the sort of thing thatwouldn't normally raise any eyebrows had the Eagles quarterback notserved federal prison time in the most famous dog fighting case in U.S.history.
Philadelphiasports site Crossing Broad posted several photos of Vick and his dogenrolled in training classes at a New Jersey location of the retailer,providing the following context.
Via Crossing Broad:
ACB tipster, whose claims can be corroborated by several tweeters, sentalong a few photos of Vick that were taken at a New Jersey PetSmart*,where Vick, his family and a bodyguard have been attending dog trainingclasses for Angel, the Vick family's young Belgian Malinois (a type ofShepherd).
The tipster says that Vick frequentsthe store and signed up for a total of six training classes on Mondayevenings, with this being the second week.
Vick admitted in October that his family owned a dog, something that he was legally allowed to do after his probation expired last summer.
"Iunderstand the strong emotions by some people about our family'sdecision to care for a pet," Vick said in a statement at the time. "As afather, it is important to make sure my children develop a healthyrelationship with animals. I want to ensure that my children establish aloving bond and treat all of God's creatures with kindness and respect.Our pet is well cared for and loved as a member of our family. This isan opportunity to break the cycle. To that end, I will continue to honormy commitment to animal welfare and be an instrument of positivechange."
From the look of the photos, he appears to be doing justthat. Irresponsible pet owners don't usually spend time and money tomake sure their puppies learn the proper ways to sit and stay. And nomatter how uncomfortable Vick's possession of a dog will make somefellow pet owners, he has been a model citizen since his release fromprison in 2009.
But can you imagine being one of the other dogowners in that class and having Michael Vick just plop down in the seatnext to you? That might make for an interesting conversation with yoursignificant other when you get home.
"Hey honey, how did Marley do at his first training class?"
"Well, Michael Vick was there with his dog."
"Oh, that's nice. Are you going to sign up for gun safety classes with Oscar Pistorius next?"
"No, seriously. Michael Vick was in our dog training."
"Fine. Remember how I went to the DMV to renew my license yesterday? Lindsay Lohan was tooooootallly in line with me."
"Come next week. You'll see Michael Vick and his dog 'Angel'."
"I don't know why you insist on lying to me."