A group of dogs rescued from an alleged dog fighting ring in southwestern Ontario now have a new lease of life thanks to a group from King City, north of Toronto.

Grateful and relieved, Robert Scheinberg and his team from Dog Tales Rescue and Sanctuary has waited two years to free 21 pit bulls.

The animal sanctuary took in the dogs after police broke up an alleged dogfighting ring in Tilbury.

“It's the biggest, I think, court case we've won so far and there's many more to come,” he says. “It was sickening. They were tied to chains. Many, many marks on them; legs, face, all over their bodies.”

The pit bulls he helped rescue were born and bred to fight and kill other dogs for alleged, illegal gambling. There are still two matters before the court.

“These dogs, while in our care, have shown behaviours that have ranged from extremely aggressive to unpredictable and it's a long road ahead,” says Jennifer Bluhm, OSPCA deputy chief.

The plan now is to find suitable homes for the animals, though they won't be here in Ontario where these breeds of dog are banned.

“Now they're going to get rehabilitated and their minds are going to be free,” says Scheinberg.

Officials say 18 of the 21 dogs were healthy enough to be saved. Later this month, they'll be travelling to Florida for a world-renowned shelter called “Dogs Playing for Life”.