Dogfighters Are Brutal Cowardly Criminals

By Michael O'Sullivan
Originally published August 31, 2007 by the Humane Society of Canada


I grew up with four brothers and when we were much younger we all boxed. In fact, one of my brothers excelled at the sport and won an Olympic medal for his tireless efforts. Every time you stepped into the ring to face your opponent, there were rules, the fight could be stopped at any time, and most important of all, it was your choice.

However, a dog forced to fight to the death doesn't get those choices. With nothing but their heart, their courage and a burning desire to please their master these dogs fight with their last ounce of energy and with every fibre of their being. And their reward? If they survive their injuries, they are forced to fight again and again. If they lose, the owner may torture and then kill the animal which has offered them nothing but trust and loyalty in return. That's why, in our opinion, dogfighters are nothing but brutal cowardly criminals.

There is a link between cruelty to animals and violence towards people. That's why since 1892 in Canada animal fighting has been illegal. Anyone who in any way aids or assists at the fighting of animals or birds can upon conviction be subject to six months imprisonment, a $2000 fine, a two year ban from owning or working with animals or a combination of all three for each single offence. However, judges rarely apply the maximum penalties.

Dogfighting is organized crime, which can involve criminal elements like conspiracy, proceeds of crime, gambling, weapons and drug offences.

What you can do to help!

Write to Prime Minister Stephen Harper letting him know that you support stronger more effective laws to prevent animals from being abused. Laws that would in part require judges to hand out specific fines, jail time and ban convicted animal abusers from owning or working with animals.

Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper
Prime Minister
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa
K1A 0A2
pm.gc.ca
pm@pm.gc.ca

Write to President Barack Obama letting him know that you support stronger more effective US federal laws to prevent animals from being abused. Laws that would in part require judges to hand out specific fines, jail time and ban convicted animal abusers from owning or working with animals.

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
www.whitehouse.gov
president@whitehouse.gov

In addition to writing to the head of state, in Canada and the U.S. there is also provincial and state legislation that deals with animal cruelty. Write to you respective Premier or Governor and let them know of your support for stronger, effective laws preventing animal cruelty.

Over the past 40 years, I've worked undercover and seen these animal fighters up close and personal. Believe me when I tell you that judges need to crack down on this kind of organized crime for the sake of animals and people.

On behalf of the animals,
Michael O'Sullivan
Chairman & CEO
The Humane Society of Canada

Copyright © 2007 Humane Society of Canada. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission.