Bait dog proves dog fighting a problem in SWFL

Posted at 10:30 PM, May 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-05 22:32:58-04

An American Bull Dog was found in Lee County battered and abused, and volunteers who rescued him believe he was being used as a bait dog to train other dogs to fight.

"Alfie was skin and bone with a head the size of a basketball. You could see every rib on him. Every single rib," Lyric Rose said.

Rose has been Alfie's caregiver for the last year. She has a rehabilitation and training center called Stonehaven K9.

She said Alfie was locked away, starved, tied up, and used for dog fighting.

"It was just horrifying. We all had tears in our eyes when he was brought to us," Rose said. "What did he do to desrve any of that?"

Rose and the volunteers of Roof for Roofus Rescue, who rescued Alfie, helped him stand a chance for a better life.

According to the Executive Director of Gulf Coast Humane Society, Jennifer Galloway, dog fighting is a problem in southwest Florida.

"We see it quite a bit, and you can usually tell by the scarring. The scarring around the ears and face, around the feet, around the legs," Galloway said.

Once skiddish and afraid of people, Alfie learned to forgive and trust again.

"He doesn't mind touching, and he lets you love all over him," Rose said.

Alfie is now ready to find his forever home nearly a year after he was rescued.

"He now can have a life with somebody. He can be part of the family. He can get love from somebody, we didn't think that was possible at first," Rose said.

Galloway said if you suspect dog fighting or see a bait dog, make sure to take photos or videos, get an exact address, and hand all of that information over to law enforcement.

If you're interested in adopting Alfie, call Roof for Roofus Rescue and ask for Debbie: (586) 443-6243, or Lyric Rose from Stonehaven K9: (239) 321-4332.

You will have to fill out an adoption application and have a home visit.