Dog Fighting Found to be Prevalent in Las Vegas - 8 News NOW

Edward Lawrence, Reporter

Dog Fighting Found to be Prevalent in Las Vegas

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The fact that police in Virginia found evidence of dog fighting at Atlanta Falcons quarterback, Michael Vick's house shows how popular the brutal practice has become. Las Vegas is not immune to the criminals who deal in dog fighting.

Dogs can be part of the family. They can be cute. They can be killers. The Lied Animal Shelter director of operations, Darin Landrum, says Las Vegas has a huge problem with dog fighting.

"You have the obvious. You can see around the legs. You can see around the legs, the ears, and face. The noticeable puncture and tears," he said.

Landrum showed Eyewitness News a passive dog, who was a bait dog and arrived July 13. That means dog fighters used this dog as practice to teach other dogs how to attack. He's 2-years old and the owners never bothered to name him.

"You can tell the ridges of the K-9 and how the skin was ripped and more punctures here," he said, pointing to the dog. It's brutal what the dogs go through.

"There has been cases where the dogs that lose in these battles get electrocuted, drowned, beat to death, and just left in the desert," said Landrum.

No one wants to think that happens in their back yard. The fact is, dog fighting may be happening in literally hundreds of back yards in Las Vegas.

Each day 125 to 200 dogs come into the Lied Animal Shelter. On any given day, Lied has 1,000 dogs. While 1,000 get adopted each month, 25,000 a year are euthanized.

Each day, some of those dogs show signs of dog fighting. Landrum says only the worst type of people use a dog to fight.    
"They are dream killers as well. All these dogs think about is having a loving home to go to. Instead, they are thrown into this horrific battle for which there is no end," said Landrum.

Win or lose, death is ensured and the only way out for the dogs involved. Pitt bulls remain dog fighters breed of choice. The breed makes up half of the dogs at the Lied Animal Shelter. Darin Landrum says pitt bulls are not a bad breed. It's just how the owner chooses to raise them that can make them aggressive.

Email your comments to Reporter Edward Lawrence.
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