While McLaughlin was not on scene to see the conditions of the dogs when they were first seized, she said many of them now show common signs of dogfighting — like scars, broken teeth and low body weight, alongside typical nervousness from never being in a traditional home environment.
“Because most of them were bred into fighting, they simply don’t know what it’s like to be a normal dog,” McLaughlin said. “They’re learning how to climb stairs, and walk through an open door without being scared. These are things they would’ve learned as a puppy, but they’re learning now at 2 or 3 years old.”
McLaughlin and her team have been visiting the dogs who still await release from the county shelter on a regular basis to provide them with a variety of enrichment sources like bones, toys or tasty Kong toys filled with treats.