Landlord finds gator, pit bull in abandoned apartment
NEW BEDFORD, Mass. (WHDH) -- A New Bedford landlord discovered an alligator and a pit bull while he was clearing out an abandoned apartment.
“This is definitely the biggest one I've ever come across,” said Animal Control Director Emanuel Maciel.
Animal Control Director Emanuel Maciel never thought he'd find a 4-year-old Cayman gator in New Bedford, let alone in a small Ashley Street apartment.
It began with a call about a pit bull abandoned by tenants who'd moved out last week.
“They said, ‘There's also something else in there,’ and I said, ‘What else is in there? And they said, ‘Well you'll see when you get there, and I said, ‘No I want to know before going in what I’m going up against,’ and they said a big gator," Maciel said.
When officers moved in, they were in for a fight.
“He was up against the corner, he started coming at us, hissing and he had a lot of momentum to get away or do his thing,” Maciel said.
They grabbed him by the mouth and wrestled him into their arms. Then they went for the pit bull who was living in squalor in a room littered with trash, feces, and no water.
“That was the only thing separating the dog and the gator was the baby gate,” said Maciel.
The gator has a puncture wound to his neck, but not from the dog.
“We were told there were supposedly kids who went in overnight and were messing with it and trying to stab it,” said Maciel.
Both pets are now getting care. Their former owners will be charged with having an illegal animal, and animal cruelty.
"You've had this animal for four years and all of a sudden you just leave it behind and think it's going to fend for itself. Where’s the love?” Maciel said.
Animal Control believes the gator was probably purchased legally in Rhode Island. It is recovering at New England Reptile in Taunton.
The pit bull is will Forever Paws.