Bradenton father, son arrested for animal cruelty

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Bradenton Officers say three dogs are lucky to be alive after their owners were arrested for animal cruelty.

"I had seen the pit bulls and the chihuahuas running around here," said Lee Watkins.

Neighbor Lee Watkins held his dog, Peanut tightly as he recalled the neighbors at the end of the street not paying close attention to their pets.

The father and son were arrested on animal cruelty charges.

"I had seen the chihuahuas running around more than they were taken care of," said Watkins.

Bradenton officers got a call that a dog was stuck on a fence by it's collar along 19th Avenue West. It turned out to be one owned by Rick Arenas-Arroyo and Pedro Arenas-Guadalupe.

"The dog was covered in fleas and dirt and looked malnourished," said Captain William Fowler with the Bradenton Police Department.

Inside officers found another pit bull and two chihuahuas in poor condition.

"They had no food. Little to no water. Their kennels were high off the ground they were covered in feces and urine," said Captain Fowler.

The excuse the father and son gave was inexcusable to officers.

"They weren't home very much. They worked quite a bit and they didn't' have time to take care of the dogs," he said.

In addition to the fleas and dirt, the four dogs had heart worms, too. One was in such bad health, it had to be put down. Another was put up for adoption.

Two others now remain at the Humane Society of Manatee County waiting for a new home.

"We are here to help them out with the care of their animals and to help educate them on what it takes to maintain a pet," said Terri Romano with the Humane Society.

While these dogs are lucky to have a better life, neighbor Lee Watkins said he can't understand how anyone would neglect their pets.

"Find someone that is going to take them and take care of them," he said.

Watkins hopes the remaining two dogs will find a home that will love them just as much as he loves his Peanut.

"Dogs are people as far as I am concerned. You have to take care of them just like your own kids," he said.

For more information on the two dogs call the Manatee County Humane Society at 941-747-8808 or visit their website at