9-Month-Old Puppy Used as ‘Bait Dog’ Dies

The male pit bull puppy found in Yonkers was unable to recover from excessive wounds and blood loss and had to be euthanized.

Local veterinarians were unable to save a 9-month-old pit bull puppy that suffered massive wounds and blood loss after likely being used as a “bait dog” to train other dogs to fight.

The SPCA of Westchester’s Humane Law Enforcement (HLE) Division was contacted by the Yonkers Animal Shelter who got a call about a severely injured dog found on a walkway between Somerville Road and Edwards Place in Yonkers. The puppy was taken a local animal hospital.

“At the time, his breathing was extremely labored,” said Ernest Lungaro, director of the SPCA’s HLE Division. “The veterinarian who examined him reported that the pit bull had severe multiple bite wounds and abrasions about his face, muzzle and head. He was extremely emaciated and neglected and was mostly likely used as a bait dog in a fighting ring. The veterinarian also noted the animal had old scars from previous attacks.” 

The puppy was put to sleep, since veterinarians determined he was unable to recover from such severe injuries. Puppies, weak or older dogs and females who can’t breed are often used as “bait dogs” and are usually tied up and/or have their teeth removed so they are rendered defenseless—according to the Briarcliff based SPCA of Westchester, a no-kill non-profit animal shelter, hospital and animal cruelty law enforcement organization.

“Although dog fighting is a crime in New York State, we are constantly on the lookout for clandestine groups who fight the animals in Westchester County,” said Lungaro.

The SPCA’s HLE Division is asking that anyone with information on this puppy or information on dog fighting in their area to make a confidential call to the animal cruelty hotline at 914-941-7797.


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