Alleged dog fighting operation housed approximately 275 dogs

Late last week the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) received a special transport of three dogs from the national organization the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) that were rescued from a large alleged dog fighting operation in South Carolina that was raided by federal officials in September of 2022.

ARL is privileged to welcome these dogs and give them the lives and homes they truly deserve.

The female dogs range from 2-3-years-old, and have received thorough medical examinations upon arrival at ARL’s Dedham Animal Care and Adoption Center.

Aside from scars that are typical of dogs that have suffered in this type of situation, one dog did need a mass removed, one dog required the extraction of several teeth, and one dog will need ongoing medication for allergies that have caused skin irritation.

The dogs are friendly, but given the circumstances they came from, they are understandably nervous around new people, however, ARL staff and volunteers are continuously working with the animals to increase their confidence and comfort level around people.

With the trauma behind them, ARL is looking forward to finding these resilient dogs the homes they deserve, and encourage potential adopters to learn more about them.

ARL wishes to thank HSUS for their efforts in rescuing these dogs, and for collaborating with ARL to help these dogs into the next phase of their lives.

Case Background

On September 25, 2022, HSUS assisted the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Office of the Inspector General to seize approximately 275 from multiple properties in the Columbia, South Carolina area as part of an ongoing investigation by the USDA, OIG, and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.

The conditions these animals were living in were horrific, with many dogs living in pens or chained to trees with barrels or makeshift shelter serving as their only protection from the elements. The dogs were suffering from a variety of injuries typically found in dog fighting situations including severe scarring, festering open wounds, lacerations, abscesses, and broken bones consistent with multiple bite wounds.

Additionally, many of the dogs were found to be dehydrated, underweight or emaciated, and infested with fleas and other parasites.

Most of the dogs were adults, however, there were multiple nursing litters of puppies removed from the properties as well.

While a portion of the 275 dogs have been surrendered and can now be placed for adoption, many are still receiving care in confidential locations while the court process determines custody.

The Animal Welfare Act makes it a felony punishable by up to five years in federal prison to fight dogs or to possess, train, sell, buy, deliver, receive, or transport dogs intended for use in dogfighting.