"Who Let the Dogs Out?"
L&O, Episode 12.01
Production number: E2208
First aired: 26 September 2001
  th of 456 produced in L&O  
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Roger & Sherri Quinn.jpg
Written By
Kathy McCormick & Douglas Stark

Directed By
Don Scardino

The detectives investigate the death of a jogger who is killed by a pit bull.


After a jogger is mauled to death by a pit bull dog, the detectives first suspect an Attica inmate who is part of a dog-fighting ring. However, the investigation leads to the owners of the dog.


Main cast

Guest cast


Ashfield Academy; Brooklyn; CACC; Central Park; Fort Greene; Garrett Veterinary Clinic; Rikers Island; Vinegar Hill


[during Sherri's testimony, the Quinns' dog King is brought in on a leash with a muzzle over his mouth; King growls and barks rabidly]
Behrens: Your honor!
Judge Scholl: Mr. McCoy?
McCoy: The defendants claim the dog is gentle, your honor. We think the jury has a right to decide for itself.
Judge Scholl: Bring the dog into the well.
[the court officer brings King closer]
McCoy: Care to pet your dog, Mrs. Quinn?
Behrens: Objection!
McCoy: [to Roger] How 'bout you, Mr. Quinn? Shall we take the muzzle off and you can pet your dog?
Behrens: I move for an immediate mistrial, your honor!
Judge Scholl: That's enough! The show is over! Mr. Quinn, take your seat. You too, Mr. Behrens. Mr. McCoy, remove that dog right now.

"Gives a whole new meaning to the term 'doggie bags'!"

- Lennie Briscoe

"On the bright side, at least there's no barking."
"Maybe they were trained not to bark."
"Well, there's a cheerful thought."

- Lennie Briscoe and Ed Green

Background information and notes

  • This is actress Elisabeth Röhm's first appearance as A.D.A. Serena Southerlyn. She replaces actress Angie Harmon who played A.D.A. Abbie Carmichael.
  • This episode seems to be based on the Diane Whipple case. Whipple was the victim of a fatal dog attack in San Francisco in January 2001. The dogs were owned by neighbors, Marjorie Knoller and her husband Robert Noel, both attorneys. Knoller failed to restrain her dogs when they attacked Whipple. Noel was not present during the attack. After a long legal battle, Marjorie Knoller was sentenced to serve 15 years to life for the death of Diane Whipple. In addition to the criminal charges, Whipple's partner, Sharon Smith, also succeeded in suing Knoller and Noel for $1,500,000 in civil damages.
  • After the September 11 attacks, the opening was changed from the normal L&O intro in honor of the victims. It is recited as follows: "On September 11th, 2001, New York City was ruthlessly and criminally attacked. While no tribute can heal the pain of that day, the producers of Law & Order dedicate this season to the victims and their families and to the firefighters and police officers who remind us everyday with their lives and courage what it truly means to be an American." The narration is replaced with the usual "In the criminal justice system..." opening for syndication. Due to the events on 9/11, the airing of this episode was postponed for a week.
  • The episode title "Who Let the Dogs Out?" is a reference to the people responsible for the training and torture of pit bulls in an underground dog-fighting ring. It is taken from the Baha Men song of the same name.
  • This episode marks the first appearance of Detective Ana Cordova, played by Andrea Navedo. She remains a recurring character throughout the twelfth, thirteenth, and fourteenth season.
  • Melissa Leo previously played Detective Kay Howard on the show Homicide: Life on the Street, which had crossovers with Law & Order.

Episode scene cards

1 2 3 4 5

Ashfield Academy
271 West 91st Street
Tuesday, May 23

Apartment of
Al Manos
832 Columbus Avenue
Tuesday, May 23

Pier 45 Warehouse
Vinegar Hill, Brooklyn
Friday, May 26

Garrett Veterinary Clinic
Fort Greene, Brooklyn
Wednesday, May 31

Rikers Island
Correctional Facility
Thursday, June 8

6 7 8 9

Office of
Sherri Quinn
759 Seventh Avenue
Monday, June 12

Apartment of
Roger and Sherri Quinn
78 West 89th Street
Monday, June 12

Chambers of
Judge Albert Scholl
Tuesday, June 20

Supreme Court
Trial Part 35
Wednesday, July 26

Previous episode:
"Deep Vote"
"Who Let the Dogs Out?"
Law & Order
Season 12
Next episode:
"Armed Forces"
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