NEWARK - The woman accused of neglecting and abandoning Patrick the dog appeared in an Essex County court today.

An attorney for Kisha Curtis asked the judge for more time in the case. A new date has been set for July 31.

The case sparked national outrage after news emerged in March 2010 that Patrick had been rescued from the bottom of a Newark trash chute, emaciated and on the verge of death.

Animal rights activists have been closely following the case and were at the court appearance today. They say they do not believe Curtis' claims that she did not harm the dog.