More than 50 pit bulls seized from Michael Vick’s property face a deadline today to be claimed. If no one comes forward, the dogs could be put down.
Last month, federal prosecutors filed court documents to condemn 53 pit bulls (one pictured here) that were seized from Vick’s Virginia property in April as part of their dog fighting investigation. As of yet, no one has claimed any of the dogs. They are being held at several unspecified shelters in eastern Virginia.
The government filed three public civil forfeiture notices regarding the dogs’ confiscation. The deadline for claims is 30 days after the final notice, which was filed July 24.
When confiscated property is unclaimed, the government asks the court to have the items declared forfeited. U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson will have the final say on the pit bulls’ fate.
Even though Hudson will determine what happens to the dogs, a PETA spokeswoman said that most likely they will be euthanized because they’re not adoptable as pets.
“These dogs are a ticking time bomb,” she said. “Rehabilitating fighting dogs is not in the cards. It’s widely accepted that euthanasia is the most humane thing for them.”
The locations of the shelters holding the pit bulls have not been public knowledge, so the pit bulls will not be stolen. The PETA spokeswoman said they are a hot commodity in the dog fighting world.
UPDATE: U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson has made a decision regarding the pit bulls seized from Vick’s property. Judge Hudson has ordered the U.S. Marshals Service to take custody of the dogs.
The judge ordered the Marshals Service to use “whatever means appropriate to protect and maintain” the dogs. It is uncertain what the U.S. Marshals Service plans to do with the dogs.
In other Vick related news, another athlete comes to Vick’s side. This time it is New York Knicks guard Stephon Marbury. Marbury called dogfighting a sport and compared it to hunting.
â€œI think itâ€™s tough,â€ Marbury said. â€œI think, you know, we donâ€™t say anything about people who shoot deer or shoot other animals. You know, from what I hear, dogfighting is a sport. Itâ€™s just behind closed doors.â€
Marbury added that it is hard when the public builds up Vick and then we break him down. He said Vick is a good human being and just got into a bad situation.
Photo: Delaware Online
(Thanks menusux, Eric, and Irene)