In Brooksville, Florida dozens of “bait dogs” used for training fighting dogs were found living in “deplorable” conditions at an alleged dog fighting facility, reports WishTvNews.
According to a press release from the Hernando County Sheriff’s Department on Thursday, an investigation over the weekend began when a severely injured dog was discovered in a cage with no food or water. When deputies arrived, an animal enforcement officer discovered a brown male pit bull in a cage under the house. The dog was was severely injured and emaciated and believed to have been a bait dog.
When removed from the cage, the dog smelled of decaying flesh. He had injuries to his face and right eye and an open gash on his front leg which had become infected. A veterinarian’s examination confirmed the dog had been used as a bait dog during dog fights. Also on the property, deputies removed 19 adult dogs and two puppies. The dogs had been caged, heavily chained and starving. One dog weighing 27 pounds had been wearing a chain weighing nearly seven pounds. Another dog weighing 28 pounds had been carrying around a 15-pound chain.
Additionally, officers found apparatus indicative of a dog fighting facility which included pull ropes, injectable antibiotics, break sticks, etc. All equipment and drugs have been seized.
Two men James Harris, 62, and Darrell Smith, 53 have been arrested and charged with multiple counts of animal cruelty. The case remains under investigation.