Following a Monday meeting with Waterford Township officials, Dan Tillery, owner of the now-Internet-famous Diggy (the smiling dog), Tillery has reported that the community prosecutor is not budging on the previous decision to have the dog ousted from the community due to Waterford’s ban on pit bulls.
Diggy (then named Sir Wiggleton) was adopted from Detroit Dog Rescue on June 6. Per the rescue, an independent veterinarian determined Diggy’s breed as American bulldog prior to placement; the township was called, as well, before Diggy was released into Tillery’s care.
Following Monday’s meeting, Detroit Dog Rescue posted the following on its Facebook page:
We’ve received tons of calls and emails about Diggy and we’re trying our best to keep everyone updated while running the shelter as well. Sadly, after we fulfilled the requirements by having a Waterford Veterinarian determine Diggy’s breed as American Bulldog, it is still not good enough.
Diggy’s owners said the city is skeptical to believe veterinarians now, because they think any vet would just want Diggy to stay in a good home. So, Waterford is sticking behind their original order and wants Diggy out of Waterford. Dan, Diggy’s owner, obtained legal representation and Detroit Dog Rescue will be there to help every step of the way. We are extremely disappointed in this decision and feel we have fulfilled every request of the city, even before Diggy’s adoption.
A formal hearing in Tillery’s citation case (he was ticketed on June 13) was set Monday for 2 p.m. on Aug. 11 in Waterford’s 51st District Court.
“Don’t worry, Diggy is safe at home with me and his momma,” Tillery posted on his Facebook page. “My lawyer and I are going to do everything possible to make sure Diggy stays in his home with us, his family. Thanks for all of your support, guys. I’m not a quitter.”
Waterford Township Prosecutor Margaret Scott said that the township will wait to allow the court to make a finding.
“We’re not going in and removing the dog, we’re not destroying the dog,” she said. “It is a pending violation. This is status quo right now.”
In the wake of the conflict Diggy (and his owners) have enjoyed a wave of support from local dog lovers. At a recent Board of Trustees meeting, more than 50 supporters asked officials to consider striking the breed-specific ordinance. At press time, an online petition in favor of a ban lift had nearly 104,000 signatures.