PANOLA COUNTY, Miss. (WREG) — Since busting a major dog fighting operation over the weekend, the Panola County Sheriff’s Office has been caring for nearly thirty dogs.
- I told my partner I didn’t want another dog. He brought home a terrifying one anyway.
- Adopted Dog Returned to Shelter After Just One Hour for ‘Being Too Big’
- PIGLET THE PINK PUPPY: OVERCOMING CHALLENGES WITH A POSITIVE PAWPRINT
- Corrie’s Roy, Evelyn and Cassie to face “serious” story with dog abuser
- French bulldogs stolen from Gardena, Calif. pet store worth $100,000
The dogs, known as bait dogs, were seized from a property in Como, Mississippi after Damien Smoot was arrested and charged with felony dog fighting on Saturday. The Panola County Sheriff’s Office said Smoot has bonded out of jail.
Caring for nearly thirty bait dogs presents new challenges for the sheriff’s office. The sheriff says he is concerned about the future well-being of the animals.
“We’re feeding them. We’re watering them. We’re having to wash the crates out two or three times a day,” said Sheriff Shane Phelps. “My hope is that we will be able to find somewhere to hold these dogs, hopefully be able to adopt them out or something. That’s my wish.”
Sheriff Phelps said after these dogs and their tragic story showed up on the news, frantic pet owners have been calling.
“We’ve had several people on Facebook and call the Sheriff’s Office here, saying their dog was stolen,” he said.
That concern was enough for Heather Dees to contact WREG. Her dog went missing on November 9.
“It’s Lenny. He is my baby. I’ve only had him a year. I got him whenever it was a really tough time, and I’m positive he’s the only reason I’m here today,” Dees said. “That dog was my best friend. So I miss him a lot.”
The Tippah County resident said it’s probably a long shot that Lenny was taken and used as bait, but that possibility haunts her.
“Its to think not only that it’s possible that somebody could come and take someone’s dog but then to put them in that situation, and it’s just your mind takes you to all those places, and it’s like ‘Oh my gosh, if he’s in there, I don’t know what I’ll do,” Dees said.
Dees said she plans to drive to Panola County to see if Lenny is among these dogs.
Sheriff Phelps says if you think your dog is among those seized during the Saturday raid, bring a picture of your dog and contact information to the sheriff’s office.