Raising Awareness About Dog Fighting

Images Courtesy of the ASPCA

Just over a week ago ten people were arrested in Elizabeth, New Jersey in conjunction with an alleged dog fighting ring. Seventeen dogs were found, most with obvious injuries, and all were living in small dirty cages. At the site investigators discovered a pellet gun, a treadmill used to develop dogs’ stamina, and a dog fighting ring stained with blood.

Such stories are commonplace in the United States, so much so that it’s easy to become numb to this horrific form of abuse. How about if, together, we try to reverse any apathy that exists about dog fighting and generate some real passion about putting an end to this blood sport!

Taking action against dog fighting

What can we do to make a difference? Here are some suggestions, and I invite you to share any additional ideas you have:

  • Learn more about dog fighting by watching “Life on a Chain,” Live link to  a documentary produced by the ASPCA.
  • Use the ASPCA’s “Get Tough on Dog Fighting Toolkit” to help educate others. This kit contains materials that you can post on social media. You can obtain this toolkit free of charge, thanks to the ASPCA.
  • Create a neighborhood watch program and report any suspicious activities.
  • Talk to your children about dog fighting so that they become the next generation of vocal advocates against this form of abuse..
  • Sign an online petition asking the Department of Justice to create harsher sentencing guidelines for people convicted of dog fighting.

What will you do to help eradicate dog fighting? Provide a comment about what specific action(s) you plan to take and I will enter your name into a drawing for a special prize. Let’s all very purposefully honor National Dog Fighting Awareness Day. Together, we can make a difference.

Best wishes,

Nancy Kay, DVM

Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine
Author of Speaking for Spot: Be the Advocate Your Dog Needs to Live a Happy, Healthy, Longer Life
Author of Your Dog’s Best Health: A Dozen Reasonable Things to Expect From Your Vet
Recipient, Leo K. Bustad Companion Animal Veterinarian of the Year Award
Recipient, American Animal Hospital Association Animal Welfare and Humane Ethics Award
Recipient, Dog Writers Association of America Award for Best Blog
Recipient, Eukanuba Canine Health Award
Recipient, AKC Club Publication Excellence Award
Become a Fan of Speaking for Spot on Facebook

Please visit http://www.speakingforspot.com to read excerpts from Speaking for Spot and Your Dog’s Best Health.   There you will also find “Advocacy Aids”- helpful health forms you can download and use for your own dog, and a collection of published articles on advocating for your pet’s health. Speaking for Spot and Your Dog’s Best Health are available at www.speakingforspot.com, Amazon.com, local bookstores, and your favorite online book seller.


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13 Comments on “Raising Awareness About Dog Fighting

  1. FBI adds animal cruelty as ‘crime against society’ in uniform crime report
    Under the changes, animal cruelty would be considered a crime against society and a “Type A” offense with four categories: simple/gross neglect, intentional abuse and torture, organized abuse (such as dog and cock fighting) and animal sexual abuse.

    If you believe an animal is in immediate harm, and if the location is known, contact local police and your local FBI branch office as soon as possible. To locate your local FBI branch, visit http://www.fbi.gov/contact/fo/fo.htm.

  2. Please provide information about access to, or a link to the online petition.

    Humans who abuse these poor creatures need to be held accountable.

  3. I missed the article on the city manager sending the pitties to a “ranch” in south TX.How in the hell can they get away with that ? and no adoption fee either ?? oh nice for BAIT DOGS ” just get them FREE IN BANDERA !!!”
    Where there going, should be “CHECKED OUT FIRST ” AND WHO IN THE BANDERA OFFICES KNOWS THAT ?? You checked re-homing out ??
    That’s just as bad as ANIMAL CRULITY ! and God knows there is plenty in and around BANDERA ! I can’t even feed Feral cats- some one tore up the shelter, and threw it down a steep ditch, and stooled TWO I HAD MADE !! MY TIME, MY MONEY- BUT WHAT MAKES ME MAD, WHY HARM THE CATS BY LEAVING THEM OUT IN THE FREEZING COLD AND RAIN, WITH NO COVER ??HOPE KARMA COMES QUICK !!!! I’M PRAYING FOR IT !!!!

  4. My heart goes out to these poor dogs. If I could I would adopt them all! However, since that is not logistically possible, I will be going to our Humane Society and bringing this information to their attention. I don’t know that this is an issue here in southern British Columbia but we can certainly make more people aware of it.
    Thanks Dr Nancy for bringing things like this to our attention!

  5. I love pit Bulls. I’ve fostered and adopted a bunch of them. This breaks my heart.

  6. I have signed the petition and will use the ASPCA kit to promote awareness of and combat dogfighting. This is an issue of great interest to me. Several years ago, my 14-month-old Cardigan Welsh Corgi puppy was killed by a fighting dog that had gotten loose and was roaming the neighborhood. This was right around the time that Michael VIck’s activities were uncovered-what an education for me!

  7. Hi Carolyn. I strongly encourage you to report what you have observed. It sounds suspicious, and there’s no harm in having authorities take a look. Thanks for caring.

  8. So there’s some state land where we walk now and then. We pass a couple hundred feet by a small sort of run down house. There is a garage with no windows that says Beware of Dog. Lots of barking coming from that garage as we pass. Outside there is a pit-type dog chained to a dog house under a tree. It looks at us and barks. Once there was a young man outside holding one of the dogs sort of protectively and the garage was open. I could see other pit-type dogs. It was a nice day.

    From what I could see, fleetingly, the dogs looked in pretty good shape. I have wondered if there is something worth reporting here. What would you do if you were me?

  9. Animal Abusers ARE Human Abusers Stop Protecting Abusers And Start Protecting Victims. Abusers belong in JAIL FOR LIFE they DON’T CHANGE. It is the Only way to Protect Victims.

  10. After all these years I am concluding that dog fighting humanoids have a genetic pre-disposition for aggression. I am going to insist that dog fighters be legally banned from inclusion in all human community, and that they be gradually euthanized as they are captured. Preferably when injured.
    This extends to the top, as many seem to carry the gene which is often expressed when power roles are assumed in public governance.

    There are those who may carry a torch for humane treatment of such scum,
    but… why? Time and History have spoken to a scream that such invertebrates are irredemable and belong in the compost pile of life.

    Certainly, the no-kill shelters should bar their attendance. And offer flags
    made of tanned jerk hides as fund raisers. I’d buy one. Or two. At least.

  11. There is a special place in Hell for those who participate in dog fighting, but they should be able to get a taste of that future while they are still on Earth. One recent rescue from a dog fighting event was someone’s pet, stolen months before.

    Judith did a great job, and Dr. Nancy, you continue to amaze me with your topics.

    Thank you.

  12. With your kind permission, I would like to reprint this op-ed in the Bandera County Courier. Just a few weeks ago, I wrote an editorial condemning the actions of city officials who had signed off on a young city employee taking all the pitties and pit mixes in the municipal shelter to a “ranch” in South Texas – a notorious area for dog fighting – to be used for “protection.” The clueless city manager, shelter clerk and mayor thought shipping out the pitties – one that’s owner had died – was a great idea. They weren’t even going to charge adoption fees. I guess out of sight, out of mind! Please read my response to the situation in the “Archives” at http://www.banderacountycourier.com. Thanks for your continued work!!