Senate pushes stiffening penalty for dog fighting

ALBANY, N.Y. (WKTV) - The State Senate has passed a bill that will stiffen the penalty for dog fighting. Currently, arranging dog fights is a felony charge, but owning an animal for the purpose of the fights is a misdemeanor.

If the Assembly follows in the footsteps of the Senate, that part of the law would increase to a felony charge as well. Locally it is tough to gage how many dog fights take place, but staff at the Stevens-Swan Humane Society says they see animals come in with fight-like wounds.

Executive Director of the Stevens-Swan Humane Society, Jerry Kraus, said, "Are there dog fights going on in this area? We can probably pretty reasonably say there are. Are they very prevalent? At this point we can say not extremely prevalent. But even if it is one case, it is too many.

Kraus says both the Humane Society and police will take anonymous tips from people who may know where dog fighting is taking place locally.

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