Police have seized six dogs after dangerous dog warrants were carried out at eight addresses across Preston and South Ribble this week.
Warrants were executed at addresses in Preston, Penwortham, Walmer Bridge and Bamber Bridge, and an investigation into various criminal offences, including the possession of a fighting dog and animal cruelty, has now started.
Specialist Dog Liaison Officers and other uniformed officers were acting on information about suspected banned breeds, and the warrants were all executed under Section 5 of The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991.
The pit bull-type dogs have been taken to local kennels pending confirmation of their breed and court proceedings.
One of the dogs was found to have suffered minor injuries.
Inspector Kev Evans, of South Division’s Operations Support Department, said the operation was all about stopping animal cruelty and removing banned breeds from the streets of Lancashire.
He added: “The warrants are an excellent example of joint working between Lancashire Police and the RSPCA.
“We take the issue of banned breeds, dangerous dogs and alleged organised dog fighting very seriously, and would encourage anyone with concerns to contact us.
“Keeping and training dogs for the purpose of fighting is both cruel and dangerous and will not be tolerated in Lancashire.”
Last month changes to the Dangerous Dogs Act came into effect, giving officers greater powers to tackle irresponsible owners.
The law has been extended and it is now an offence for a dog to be dangerously out of control in all places, including inside the dog owner’s home – protecting people such as postal workers, health professionals and children.
Previously the maximum sentence for an aggravated dog attack was two years imprisonment, but under the new Act, the maximum prison sentence for an owner whose dog kills a person has been increased to 14 years.
Anyone with any information or concerns about dangerous dogs should contact Lancashire Police on 101.
Alternatively, information can be passed on via the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, or on-line at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.
No personal details are taken, information is not traced or recorded and you will not go to court.