Construction official Paul Arthur wasn't expecting anything out of the ordinary when he responded to a report of electricity being stolen on Nassau Street in Orange.
He saw an "emaciated" pit bull tied to a chain in the alley between two houses, and then saw more and more of them as he entered the house and went into various rooms, according to News12 New Jersey. Arthur then decided he needed back-up.
Animal Control came to the house and found 11 pit bulls, bleach, syringes, and a weight sled that could be used to strengthen the dogs before a fight. The sled as well as scars on the dogs' legs and faces led Animal Control to believe the pitbulls were used for fighting.
The dogs were seized by Animal Control and are now being cared for by the Associated Humane Societies of Newark. Animal Control reported that they "were timid and submissive," which led official Rudy Giordano to speculate that they are "bait dogs."
"These are the poor dogs that they put in the middle of a ring and let the other pit bulls come out and just tear them apart," Giordano told News12 New Jersey.
Three men have claimed ownership of the 11 dogs. They may soon face charges: dogfighting is a felony in 48 states, according to CNN.
The Humane Society estimates 40,000 people in the United States are involved in professional dogfighting, CNN reported.