Humane Society standing behind "Diggy" and opposing Waterford Township's pit bull ban

Posted at 4:12 PM, Jun 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-13 18:14:21-04

The Michigan Humane Society is throwing their support behind "Diggy" - the dog that is now at the center of Waterford Township's controversial ban on "pit bulls."

A picture of Diggy and his new owner, Dan Tillery, took the internet by storm last week, but then had police officers knocking on Tillery's door, telling him that Diggy looked like a "pit bull."

Tillery adopted Diggy, formerly known as Sir Wiggleton, from Detroit Dog Rescue and they maintain the dog is actually an American Bulldog.

Tillery and Detroit Dog Rescue's Executive Director Kristina Rinaldi went to the Waterford Township Police Department Monday to get a review of Diggy's case started, but when officers learned that Diggy still remained at Tillery's home, they issued him a citation.

In a posting on Facebook Monday, the Michigan Humane Society said they oppose the township's ban and asked that Diggy be allowed to remain in his new home.

Police pointed to some published reports and a Facebook post by Detroit Dog Rescue where the dog is referred to as an "American Bulldog/Pit Bull" mix.

Rinaldi said the dog being called part pit bull was an error due to the large number of actual pit bulls and pit bull mixes that they save from possible death at Detroit Animal Control.

The City of Detroit only classified the dog as an "American Bulldog" stray in documentation that dates back several months.

Veterinary records also list the dog as an American Bulldog.

Last week, police told 7 Action News that they expected Diggy to be removed from the township over the weekend.

A police official said that if a local veterinarian takes a look at Diggy's case and deems him to be anything but a pit bull, the dog will be allowed to reside in the township.

Tillery and Rinaldi are hopeful that the veterinarian's review of the case will result in Diggy being classified as an American Bulldog.

The citation issued calls for Tillery to appear in court within 10 days.

Diggy's case has revived a push for Waterford Township to lift the pit bull ban.

Tillery posted the following on his Facebook page Monday:

"To all dog lovers and Supporters of Diggy. Because Diggy still remains at his home with us, I was issued a citation today. Diggy is safe and happy. We are cooperating with the Waterford Police. All we can do now is remain hopeful that this can be resolved soon. Diggy Thanks you all for your support."