Ten pit bulls used in illegal dog fights in northern Iowa will likely be put to death as a Mason City veterinarian says there’s little chance they can be rehabilitated. The Cerro Gordo County Attorney’s office recommends the dogs be destroyed and Assistant County Attorney Carlyle Dalen says they need a court ruling first.

Dalen says they’re waiting for a judge to decide what’s appropriate and who should have custody of the dogs. He says if they’re given to the state, in this case Cerro Gordo County, they’ll be euthanized. The ten dogs were seized after a dog fight in August at which two men were arrested on charges ranging from dog fighting to cocaine possession.

Dalen says they’ve made multiple attempts to contact the dogs’ owners. He says at least five people are believed to be possible owners and none of them are responding. Dalen says the County Attorney’s office did its best to balance the well-being of the dogs with the safety of the community.

He says, “We tried to have a hearing here which is not only in the best interests of the dogs but also in the best interests of our community. Based on the dogs’ demeanor and aggressiveness, the safety issue regarding what to do with the dogs is decided in this case. These dogs need to be euthanized.” Dalen says he expects to hear the judge’s decision on custody of the dogs within the next few days.