Now What, Are the Pit Bulls Adoptable?
Daytona Beach, FL - In a victory against animal abusers, over 30 pit bulls will not be sent home to their owners who neglected them and used them for dogfighting. The trio, who face criminal charges including animal cruelty, dogfighting and confinement, were also prohibited from owning any dogs for at least a decade.
County Judge David Foxman ordered dog owners Tharvellus Walker, Wylene Walker and Theodore Lock to pay more than $11,000 to the Humane Society for the medical care and upkeep of the 31 remaining canines and four puppies that have since been born to one of the females. One dog had to be destroyed.
The pit bulls were seized after a drug task force with the Volusia County Sheriff's Office served a warrant on Tharvellus Walker. Task force investigators found the dogs in the backyard. Officer Liz Devlin said the seizure was "just a drop in the bucket" because dogfighting is "so prevalent in Daytona Beach."
Devlin, who has been investigating animal abuse and dogfighting cases for nearly 14-years, said the Michael Vick case has brought it more to the public's attention. Vick, the former Atlanta Falcons quarterback, is serving a federal prison term after being convicted of operating a dogfighting ring.
Now the issue becomes, "What to do with the abused dogs?" Because of dogfighting pracitices, some Florida animal shelters have "no adopt out" policies for pit bulls. So while the dogs will not be sent back to their owners, they stand a high likelihood of being euthanized by animal shelters.