Authorities believe that a dog fighting ring may be operating in northern Iowa after an elderly pitbull that had likely been used as a fight dog was found running stray in rural Cerro Gordo County.
According to the Humane Society of North Iowa when the dog, now named Rocky, was brought to the Mason City Stray Animal Shelter staff noticed several abnormalities. Officials say that Rocky had deep scars all over his face and body that were consistent with being used as a fighting dog. His ears had also been completely removed to the point of disfigurement causing hearing loss and infection. The Humane Society says that dogs involved in dog fighting often have their ears "cropped" so other dogs have nothing to hold on to.
The shelter says that Rocky is among several other dogs that have shown up at the shelter over the years and that this indicates that there are individuals participating in dog fighting in the area. Participating in dog fighting is a felony in the state of Iowa and even being present at a fight as a spectator is considered an aggravated misdemeanor.
After being brought to the shelter, Rocky was thoroughly examined and the results suggest that he is a rehabilitated fight dog. Officials say he shows no signs of aggression and may have once been someone's pet. He was held in the shelter for the required 7 days, and no owner has claimed him.
Anyone interested in adopting Rocky is being asked to call the Humane Society of North Iowa at 641-423-6271 or visiting them online here.
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