Recently, we heard about what is believed to be the largest dogfighting raid in U.S. history. The effort that included federal and state agencies, with the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) assisting.
The dogfighting operations were believed to have spanned eight states and included arrests in Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Nebraska, and Mississippi. Dogs are being safely transported to a secure facility under the direction of the Humane Society of Missouri Animal Cruelty Task Force, where they will be cared for until final disposition is determined by the United States District Court.
According to the HSUS, In organized dogfighting, two dogs, usually pit bulls, fight until one or both can’t continue. The dogs suffer serious injuries or death in the match.
Often, the owner of the losing dog will shoot or abandon the injured dog to die slowly from injuries.
What You Can Do
Get a copy of our public service announcement on dogfighting, and urge your local radio station to air it. Learn how to spot the signs of dogfighting and what else you can do, too. Or find out about urban dogfighting and how to end it in your community.
Despite being wonderful companion animals, Pit Bulls often attract the worst kind of dog owners—those who are only interested in them for fighting or protection. It’s a shame what has happened to this loyal and affectionate breed. Despite its illegality, people are still training and breeding Pit Bulls to participate in dog fights across the country. Here are ten ways you can help end this cruel “sport”:
- Support stronger laws. Visit the ASPCA Advocacy Center to keep up to date on dog fighting legislation in your state.
- Alert the media! Your local newspaper and television station are always looking for stories, especially investigative ones—be sure to contact them about the cruelty and dangers of dog fighting.
- Call or write your local law enforcement department and let them know that investigating dog fighting cruelty should be a priority. Dog fighting is a CRIME—and the police MUST investigate these cases.
- Keep your eyes and ears open. If you suspect dog fighting in your own neighborhood, contact the police or your local animal control officer. Provide as much information as you can, such as the date and time you noticed something wrong, the address or location, and what led you to believe there was dog fighting taking place.
- Protect your pets. Dog fighters sometimes steal companion animals to use as bait dogs. Don’t let your animals outside without supervision, and make sure they have proper identification tags and are microchipped.
- Adopt a Pit Bull and let your perfect pooch be an ambassador for the breed! Be sure to read our Pit Bull adoption tips before you start your search.
- Set a good example for others. If you are already the proud parent of a Pit Bull, be sure to always show them the love and good care that they deserve. And always let others know what great companions they make!
- Volunteer! If your local shelter is facing a Pit Bull dilemma, volunteer to help keep adoptable Pit Bulls and Pit mixes mentally and physically fit by exercising them or taking them to obedience classes. You can also lead a chew-toy drive at work to collect rawhides or hard rubber playthings to keep them busy, or help create a fundraiser to support a free sterilization program for Pit Bulls in your local shelter.
- Educate others in your community about the horrors of dog fighting and start a neighborhood watch program.
- Teach your children. Do your kids have questions about dog fighting? Visit our children’s website, ASPCA Animaland, for information about dog fighting that’s written especially for kids.
Animal Fighting Hurts Animals, Children, Communities and You
Be Part of the Solution
The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) offers a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone involved in dogfighting or cockfighting.
If you have information about illegal animal fighting, you are eligible for this reward. Here are the steps to take.
Spread the Word!
Order our Animal Fighting Reward posters and display them prominently throughout your community or wherever you suspect illegal dogfighting is occurring. To order your free action pack of dogfighting reward posters and stickers, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additionally, The HSUS offers rewards in specific animal cruelty cases, at the request of local law enforcement, to assist in apprehending perpetrators. If you have information about any of the cases below, please contact the local law enforcement agency listed in the case descriptions. You can also contact The HSUS’s Media Relations Department at 202-452-1100.
Note: In order to qualify for the Rewards program, this must be an open case. Additionally, law enforcement officers (including ACOs and Humane Officers) are not eligible for the HSUS Rewards program.