Niagara Falls man charged with cutting ears of puppies

Ears were cut for "aesthetic" reasons

Mike Baggerman
October 10, 2019 - 2:33 pm



NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WBEN) - A Niagara Falls man was arrested and charged with animal cruelty after he allegedly cut the ears of seven pitbull puppies.

The Niagara County SPCA's Ryan Scott said their office was alerted to a botched cropping job from an area veterinarian's office where the dogs were taken following the procedure.

"It was clearly a job that was not done professionally," Scott said. "It was a jagged, botched job. Clearly, these animals were in some pain."

A further investigation resulted in the arrest of 45-year-old Michael Paonessa. According to WGRZ, he was arraigned earlier this week in Niagara Falls City Court.

The puppies are currently recovering from their injuries.

Scott said some people have the ears of dogs cropped for aesthetic reasons. He said he is unaware of a dog fighting ring.

"If (cropping ears) doesn't have a medical benefit for the dogs, why do it?" Scott said.

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