Dozens of dogs from a suspected dog fighting ring in Apopka are now getting special care.
Orange County Animal Services is now caring for 34 rescued dogs. Most are pitbull mixes. It is still too early to tell if they will be able to be put up for adoption. Police said they found treadmills, punching bags and whips behind the home where the dogs were found.
Pawfection Dog Trainer Darryl Payne said it is still unclear if the dogs can be adopted because to train fighting dogs they are pushed beyond their natural instinct. Dogs naturally stop fighting when the other dog is on the ground in submission, he said. But fighting dogs are trained to keep going until they kill the other animal or dog. Fighting dogs have keep issues, and Payne said it takes a special person and special circumstances to retrain these dogs.
However, he said there is hope for these dogs. While some may have to be euthanized, most should be fine with people. While they may distrust humans, they are most dangerous toward other animals. Payne said if they are adopted, they should not be given to people with other pets.
Even the puppies could show aggressive behavior because they were most likely bread from two fighting dogs. However, with the proper training they can grow up to learn good behavior and function well around other people and pets.