WATERFORD TWP. — Diggy, the viral, smiling dog stuck in the middle of a township pit bull ban dispute, will get to stay with his owner after all.
The pet shelter group Detroit Dog Rescue announced on Facebook that the court case surrounding Diggy — née Sir Wiggleton — was dismissed.
“I’m overjoyed to know that Diggy will be spending the rest of his life where he belongs – with his family,” said Kristina Rinaldi, Detroit Dog Rescue Director, in the post.
“Diggy’s road to forever was a combination of so many great people working together and that’s what rescuing dogs is all about.”
Diggy spent around 100 days at the shelter before Dan Tillery adopted him June 6.
Waterford Township police had said Diggy was being kept illegally, due a local ordinance banning pit bull ownership. Police visited Diggy’s owner on June 9 and determined the dog fit the ordinance’s definition.
As the long, winding road to a permanent home for the dog continued, Detroit Dog Rescue called in the help of a local veterinarian who classified Diggy as an American Bulldog.
The pit bull ban gained the attention of the Humane Society of the United States, which lashed out at breed-specific legislation.
“Breed-specific legislation is an ineffective animal management strategy that has failed everywhere it has been tried, and we strongly urge you to repeal your breed-based ordinance provisions,” Cory Smith, the organization’s companion animal public policy director, wrote in a June 13 letter.
“As is becoming evident in current headlines, breed bans are inhumane policies which do nothing good for communities but take dogs with clean histories away from families who love them,” he wrote.
“Sound community management of dogs has nothing to do with breed, and Waterford will benefit from making this positive shift.”
In August, Waterford Township tweaked its pit bull ban to “‘make it easier for the dog owners and the township’ when confusion about a breed arises,” the Detroit News reports.
Check out Detroit Dog Rescue’s original post celebrating the photo that they “knew would break the internet:”