Fresno Family Forbidden From Owning Pit Bulls

FRESNO, Calif. One animal control officer says he has responded to six dangerous animal seizures in the last two months. Of those one family can no longer own pit bulls.

Three weeks ago animal control, armed with a warrant, removed the pit bull that lived at the Gaitan house. To date, this is their third pit bull to be seized and euthanized.

Humane officer Mike Arens said, "In most of the cases that we have on dangerous or potentially dangerous it's not the dog's fault it's the owners."

Arens testified before a superior court judge that the Gaitan's were unfit animal owners. Court documents obtained by Action News show the S.P.C.A. seized two of their pit bulls in December of 2007 for terrorizing the neighborhood and killing a poodle.

From September 2008 to May 2009 animal control was called out seven times. One of the Gaitan's pit bulls was seen in the neighborhood without a leash or license.

Neighbor Caesar Cerrano said, "I remember one time I came to check the mail and the dog's standing right here. I had to go to work at four in the morning."

"Intimidating," said Action News.

Cerrano responded, "Yes, quite intimidating, but he's harmless."

In fact the S.P.C.A. had no reports of the pit bull attacking anyone. Still, due to the Gaitans record of neglect with the S.P.C.A., Arens got the dog labeled 'Dangerous' by a judge.

The Gaitans had 90 days to appeal the ruling but did nothing. The family was not available to speak with Action News.

Arens said, "They've had three dogs destroyed and there's no doubt in my mind that if they don't already have another one they will have another one."

The Gaitans are forbidden by the courts to own, possess or care for a pit bull for the next three years. They are also ordered to pay $620 in fees to the S.P.C.A.

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