Richmond Animal Control suspects dogfighting after pit bull found severely injured

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RICHMOND, Va. -- Richmond Animal Care and Control needs the public’s help in trying to break up what they believe is a dog fighting enterprise near Fairfield Court that left a dog so injured he had to be euthanized.

Someone called Animal Control Thursday to report a stray dog in their yard on X Street.

Officers found the dog, a pit bull, bloodied and somber with scars covering his entire body and maggots eating his insides.

“The ripping of the flesh around his face is indicative of a dog tearing at that continuously,” Christie Chipps Peters, with Richmond Animal Care and Control said.

Peters said the injuries were so severe the dog had to be euthanized.

Christie Chipps Peters

Christie Chipps Peters

Graphic pictures show the blue eyed dog with an ear half missing. His nose was a mess of old scars, with fresh cuts all over. Marks – old and new — lead up the dogs face and surround his eyes.

Peters said he was most likely used for dogfighting.

“We have also had multiple complaints within the past month, and another dog we picked up in the area within the five block space of where X street is that had matched that same description,” Peters said.

This dog was found on X Street in Church Hill.

This dog was found on X Street in Church Hill.

Among those complaints people saying they heard someone beating a dog, and they heard dog fights.

But, when CBS 6 reporter Melissa Hipolit visited the neighborhood everyone told her they knew nothing about it.

“Dog fighting is just like drug dealing, it’s very dangerous to turn people in,” Michelle Welch, who heads up Attorney General Mark Herring’s Animal Law Unit said.

She said dogfighting goes hand in hand with drugs and guns.

“That’s usually what we see in the inner city, it’s someone who is maybe a gang member or a drug dealer they have some type of other criminal behavior and they’re getting into this because they want the biggest and baddest dog they can have,” Welch said.

And, although it can be scary, she said the community plays an important role in stopping it through anonymous tips to animal control and even her office.

“Most of the time the community knows and it’s just a question of them saying enough is enough and them coming forward and letting somebody know,” Welch said.

This dog was found on X Street in Church Hill.

This dog was found on X Street in Church Hill.

Welch said dogfighting is a class six felony with sentences ranging from one day to five years in jail.

If you know anything about this case, contact Richmond Animal Care and Control at 646-5573 with any information- you can remain anonymous.

Additionally, the Humane Society of the United States offers up to a $5,000 reward for any info that results in a conviction. For more on the process visit their website.