Hendry Co. responds to dog overbreeding concerns

Posted at 10:22 PM, Sep 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-27 22:26:15-04

Dog rescue groups have been saving neglected, abused, starving dogs in Southwest Florida, and tell Four in Your Corner they see the most out of Hendry County.

Last week, we introduced you to two dogs, one who has just months to live, and another who had to be put down on Saturday because she was so severely neglected.

Brandi is a nine-year-old pitbull who was rescued by Pure Hearts Rescue and fostered by Tammy Henry.

"She's got scars all over her that are consistent with fighting. She's been overbred greatly, you can tell," Henry said.

Henry has seen her fiar share of neglected dogs; she's been working with animals for 15 years, some of that time at Clewiston Animal Control in Hendry County.

"The presence is heavy here. Dog fighting, overbreeding pitbulls," Henry said.

Henry blames the problem on overbreeding.

"It contributes to the crime that goes on here because in certain places, they're just running loose everywhere. They're almost like mice," Henry said.

She said laws need to be in place to stop regulate breeding.

Four in Your Corner's Lisa Greenberg reached out to Hendry County officials for the first time in June after visiting the area, asking if they would consider laws to prevent overbreeding. A few weeks later, she emailed again, with no response.

"That's why a lot of the help is coming from outside Hendry County, because the help just isn't there," Carey Kendzior with the Pit Bull Crew said.

After meeting with Kendzior and Henry last week, Fox 4 reached out to Hendry County officials again, and finally heard back.

The county's Planning and Community Development Director Margaret Emblidge said they're reading up on ordinances related to breeding, and looking into possibly creating a registration process for breeders, including home inspections.

Emblidge said in the next month, they plan to take some ideas for regulating breeding activity to the Hendry County Commissioners.

Hendry said she's glad officials are looking into this, but will be even happier if they follow through. She also hopes they'll consider anti-tethering ordinances because so many neglected dogs in Hendry County are found on chains.