Praise, praise, and more praise to Tori Marlan and Robert A. Davis ("Battle Scars," September 15) for their photo essay on dogfighting. However sad and disturbing, I'm grateful readers were given the opportunity to see the real consequences of this disgusting activity. There is no doubt that the luckiest dogs are the ones that die quickly or those that are rescued and euthanized or, in certain cases, rehabilitated and adopted to good homes. As an animal shelter volunteer, you really never get used to seeing dogs, many of which are pit bulls, come in with ears that have been chewed up or ripped off, protruding ribs, open wounds, and a fear of humans so intense that they'd rather eat and sleep in their own waste than come anywhere near you.
It doesn't take a genius to figure out that those who torture animals are pretty horrible people. The only ones we have to thank for the notoriously bad reputation of pit bulls are the ignorant, irresponsible owners who train these otherwise loving and playful dogs to kill and maim.
Let's hope the CPD's Animal Abuse Control Team can make a dent in the dogfighting problem. Regular citizens can also take some responsibility by reporting to the police any sort of animal abuse or neglect they might witness in their neighborhood.
Tori Marlan replies:
Concerned readers can also express their support for the program by writing to Superintendent Terry Hillard, Chicago Police Department, 3510 S. Michigan, Chicago, Illinois 60653. People with dogfighting tips can page Sergeant Steve Brownstein at 312-571-6939.