NAFA Working To Stop Dog Fighting In Region 8

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) -- The images are disturbing. Dogs-- man's best friends-- forced to fight each other for man's pleasure, and some say it's happening right here in Region Eight. Sickened by the sight of dogs tearing each other apart, one Northeast Arkansas group is fighting back.

"The smell is sickening, the sounds are sickening. The looks of excitement on the people's faces when they watch the dogs try to tear each other apart is perhaps the most haunting thing I can tell you that I will ever remember," said Wannda Turner.

It's highly secretive, cruel and illegal....and Wannda Turner with Northeast Arkansans' for Animals says it's going on in Northeast Arkansas.

Wannda and other NAFA officials are working to create a task force to help investigate and ultimately prosecute those taking part in what Wannda calls a nauseating crime. A crime, Turner says, that's hard to actually catch people doing.

"These fights can be set up, fought and taken apart in the space of two hours. They move constantly," said Turner.

Wannda says due to their stature and loyal personalities, pit bulls are usually a dog fighter's animal of choice....often giving this particular breed a bad wrap.

"You know, they're a great, sweet family pet.  They can also be a killing dog. It's not the dogs, it's the people that do it with the dogs that we're after.>

Turner says dog fighting is something that goes on all year long.  It's during cooler months that they move indoors, perhaps making it easier for nearby neighbors to see or hear something going on.

"If people in your neighborhood are bringing in dogs and you notice a lot of growling and howling going on, that's an indication that something is not all it's supposed to be.

If you have information, you can contact NAFA at 932-1955, or 919-2947.

NAFA and the Humane Society of the United States are offering reward money for the arrest and conviction of those participating in dog fighting rings.

There are some signs to look for if you think there may be dog fighting going on including tires suspended from trees to provide jaw strengthening activities.

*Dog treadmills are created to build endurance.

*A "cat or jenny mill" which confines a cat, rabbbit or small animal and encourages the dog to "chase the present".  As a reward, the dog gets to capture and kill the animal inside.

*Ownership of several adult dogs that are confined by thick chains with or without weights on their collars.