Philadelphia is going to the dogs – or not. Many Philadelphians including some on city council are reconsidering what they call a “knee jerk” adverse reaction to animal cruelty.

When Michael Vick was first charged with cruelty to animals and killing dogs, many Philadelphians were understandably upset. But there’s been a change of heart in the city of brotherly love since Michael Vick has brought the Philadelphia Eagles into first place in the NFC East.

One Philadelphian wondered if perhaps the dogs deserved what Vick had done. “We weren’t there,” he said. “We don’t know what those dogs did to him.”

With Vick’s contract coming to an end and some suspecting that Vick could be playing elsewhere next year, many Philadelphians say they’re willing to reconsider the ban on animal cruelty if Vick re-signs with the Eagles.

Some animal rights activists in Philadelphia are even supporting a repeal of the ban but are urging Vick to limit his torture and slaughter to less beloved animals. They’re urging the football star to perhaps strangle guinea pigs or kick squirrels to death. But they quickly add that they’re willing to negotiate if that’s a deal breaker.

When Vick was a second string quarterback many Philadelphians were unhappy with Vick even being on the team. But since Vick stepped in for the injured Kevin Kolb and surpassed everyone’s expectations, Philadelphians are suddenly fond of talking about “forgiveness,” “redemption” and “second chances.”

Those who say that they don’t want Vick representing this city have been advised to stop being so judgemental or just move out of the city if they don’t like it.

In a show of solidarity and empathy with Vick, jersey sales with Vick’s number are rising through the roof. One can expect that many children in Philadelphia will be receiving Vick jerseys under the Christmas tree this year.

Local veterinarians have also suggested bringing terminally ill animals to the Eagles locker room before games and locking them in with the quarterback a few minutes before game time.

One veterinarian offered that this isn’t the time to scream about right and wrong when there’s a possible playoff run in the making.

Philadelphia proves the old adage: To err is human, to win is divine.