Pit bull seizure numbers decline in Lucas County

By Lisa Rantala - email | bio
Posted by LS

LUCAS COUNTY (WTOL) - The stats climb with every cage, every bark, every pit bull that has been seized by or surrendered to the Lucas County dog warden.

"We pick up a lot of pit bulls from drug houses with police. We pick up a lot of pit bulls showing signs of having been fought," says Lucas County Dog Warden Tom Skeldon.

That's why Skeldon backed new local laws for this specific breed. The laws aim mainly keep it muzzled and restrict owners to one pit bull in the City of Toledo.

Skeldon says the number of pit bulls he took in last year went down by 70 dogs. The end tally was 1281. "I'm hoping we've turned a corner," said Skeldon. Before people could get the dog back, the county spayed or neutered the dog at the owner's expense.

"We had more people walk out the door than wanted the dog back if it were spayed or neutered," Skeldon told News 11. He says it kept the possible pit bull fighters away and obeying the laws. It also kept them from breeding their dogs and creating more dogs for illegal purposes.

Skeldon said, "If somebody says no, I don't want that dog just because it's neutered. Then, I question what they were having pit bulls for." He adds, that pit bulls are still the number one dog they take in and there have been owners who wanted them back -- even after the $100 operation.

The majority of pit bull dogs taken in over 2008 saw the same fate as any other year. "The majority of pit bulls that we seize are being put down," Skeldon said.