Pit bull puppy with cropped ears rescued

Activists raise concerns over illegal dog fighting, rise in cases of such mutilations

June 28, 2018 01:36 am | Updated 01:36 am IST - New Delhi

 The rescued puppy at the Sanjay Gandhi Animal Care Centre.

The rescued puppy at the Sanjay Gandhi Animal Care Centre.

A pit bull puppy that had its ears cropped has been rescued by an animal shelter in the Capital. The incident has activists concerned that the dog, and others like it, may have be used in illegal dog fighting.

Ambika Shukla, director of Sanjay Gandhi Animal Care Centre, said the centre had rescued the puppy on Tuesday.

She said the centre was given custody of the dog on Wednesday after it filed a complaint regarding violation of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, which prohibits maiming of any animal.

The puppy, who is around three months old, was brought to the centre for medical treatment by a young boy, she said.

“Apparently, the surgery to crop the ears was done 10-12 days ago as the wound had gone septic and the stitches were still there,” said Ms. Shukla.

Since ear-cropping and tail docking are banned, the puppy’s owners, residents of Vishnu Garden, were questioned. The couple said they had bought the puppy from Amritsar, Punjab.

Ms. Shukla said that since the puppy had his ears cropped, she suspected that he was being prepared for illegal dog fighting. She added that dog fighting was prevalent in Punjab as was the use of pit bulls.

“Dogs are kept hungry and chained to make them aggressive so that they are furious enough to kill the other dog,” she said.

Ms. Shukla said that ear-cropping and tail docking affect the dogs adversely.

“Dogs have sharp ears and in the absence of ear flaps, they are unable to protect themselves from infections and loud sounds,” she said.

“Tails protect the anal areas of the dog and are also used by them to express their emotions,” she said, adding that dogs with cropped tails develop aggressive behaviour as they try to express themselves by jumping and licking.

Rising cases in Delhi

Animal rights activists said that there has been a growing trend of cropping ears and tails of pit bulls.

“In March, we came across a similar case where a resident of Shalimar Bagh brought a pit bull puppy who had cropped ears. He admitted to having got the dog operated on at a clinic in Pitampura,” said Ms. Shukla, adding that a police complaint had been filed in the case.

Mandy Seth, president of animal shelter Friendicoes, also said that more pit bulls were being seen with their ears cropped and tails chopped.

“It is very difficult for us to rehabilitate such dogs. They are mostly aggressive and it takes a long time to re-home them,” said Ms. Seth.

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