Illegal Dog Fighting in the UKKeith
Dog Fighting – Against the Law for Almost 200 Years
A dog fight takes place every 24 hours in the UK, with victims having their injuries patched up by “street surgeons” using nothing more than superglue and staples, a new report reveals.
Although illegal for 200 years ago, dog fights are still rampant in the UK, with criminals taking ordinary animals with the intention to “manipulate and exploit them for profit and reputational gain”.
Stolen pets, like smaller dogs and cats are used as “bait” to train dogs for fights, which can last for up to 5 hours.
A report commissioned by the League Against Cruel Sports is the first comprehensive look at dog fighting in the UK.
Tom Quinn, Campaigns Director for the League, said: “The UK’s dog lovers will be sickened to learn that the cruelty of dog fights, which can result in torn flesh, blood loss, disembowelment and death, continues to go on in the UK.
“Traditionally dog fighting was hidden away in rural areas and managed albeit to a professional level.
“Now we’re seeing a move to urban areas, where dog fights are becoming a way of establishing dominance, often related to gang activity. Either way, it’s often about machismo and money, and the dogs will inevitably suffer.”
Authors of the report, criminologists Dr Simon Harding and Dr Angus Nurse spoke to people involved in dog fights and examined the ‘sport’, motivations and extent of dog fighting as well as the means to deal with it.
Dr Harding said that there is “clear evidence of dog fighting in the UK”, ranging from every-day impromptu street fights, through to hobbyists to professional fights where large amounts of money changes hand.
He said: “It is clear that regardless of the level of dog fighting, these people are all connected by a common thread of secrecy, callousness and links to other crimes.”
Dr Harding added: “Dog fighting is a cruel and violent practice which has no place in modern Britain. Offenders take ordinary animals, manipulate and exploit them for profit and reputational gain.
“It is a serious concern that this activity, outlawed 180 years ago, remains, and in some communities even thrives even today.
“We should all work together to stop this practice for good.”