New NYS Law makes it Criminal to be a Spectator at a Dog Fight

I used to live in a neighborhood where dog fighting was not uncommon.  I feared and pitied the poor dogs who I saw walking down the street dragging chains and heavy weights to build up their muscles for fighting.  One day while waiting for the bus, I heard the sounds of  dog fighting in a house nearby.

I ran home and phoned the police since dog fighting is a crime.  Soon, at least two police cars were on the scene and confiscated the dogs. I don’t know whether these victims of human greed and cruel entertainment were eventually killed at the shelter but at least they no longer would live a life of pain and blood-spilling.

Until recently, it was only a violation of the law for people to attend dog fights.  This was a big loophole because organizers of the fight could quickly jump out of the ring and into the audience when they realized police were approaching.  As of Sept. 2, 2011,  spectators can be fined up to $500 and can spend up to three months in prison.  Hopefully, this will reduce the number of people who attend such barbaric events and thus reduce the occasion of these events.

Another personal experience I had of the cruelties of dog fighting came in the form of a very friendly, very emaciated pit bull.  She showed up on someone’s doorstep and the woman asked me to help bring the dog to a vet for attention.  She looked like a skeleton.  She had been nursing puppies so she probably was used as a breeder but then abandoned.  Happily, she is now healthy and happy, but how many other breeder dogs are abandoned this way?

Linda is President of People for Animal Rights. For a sample of our newsletter or other information, contact her at PAR, P.O. Box 15358, Syracuse13215-0358, (315)488-PURR(7877) or LDESTEFANO3@twcny.rr.com   www.peopleforanimalrightsofcny.org

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