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Imagine… a dog is beaten and bloody, chains wrapped around its neck as it brutally ripped to pieces for pure amusement. Crowds cheer as the defenceless animal painfully takes its last breath, yet no one will mourn its death. They will bathe its bloody body in large amounts of cash and drugs, ultimately giving the opponent a reward for the death it has caused. This is dog fighting, true nature, in reality. Death, amusement, and abuse will never seem to leave the arena in which the dog took its last breath which people flocked to see. The sport is inhumane in many ways. Apparently, people believe it is alright to cheer for their life-long, loyal companion while he is being ripped to shreds. Dog fighting is not acceptable, and should be prohibited in all states and territories of Australia.

What is dog fighting? Dog fighting is ruthless sport where dogs, specifically bred, fight to the death in an arena, surrounded by crowds that cheer each vicious animal on. The dogs are fought for spectator’s amusement and gambolling. The duration of the fights is anywhere between two and three hours, ending when one animal can no longer take it and gives into its barbaric opponent. Dog fighting can be organised or unorganised, and is common within urban areas. It is well known that these fights are commonly found everywhere. It could take place in your neighbourhood and you wouldn’t even know it, but many suspect that dog fighting may be taking place in their local area but do not report it. Would you report it?

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What many people don’t know is that dog fighting has a long and disturbing history. Dogs have fought in the roman colosseums. In 1817 dog fighting was introduced to America. Although by the late 1860’s most states had felonies against it, dog fighting was known as Americas favourite pass time. In 1835 it was outlawed in England but the humane act of 1835, but It can never entirely be gone until we expand our knowledge to the fighters, the uneducated, the crowds who flock to cheer them on. Is this how we want Australia to be seen? As a country where animal companions are beaten ’till they bleed, just for our pure amusement? Where is the pity for those who are in need of compassion?

It is estimated there are over 40,000 people involved in dog fighting. Many children living in crime, in urban areas are exposed to this and are eventually taught to admire the sport and promote it. Public fights take place all around the country, for many, they are family events. As a young schoolgirl stated to me, she strongly believes that family events should not built upon blood and pain, and the abuse of living creatures is wrong and should not be being promoted.

There are many ways that people train their dogs. The treadmill is a popular. This is where the dog runs on a treadmill in order to increase their cardiovascular fitness and endurance. The cat mill or the jenny is another favourite, it looks like a carousel at a carnival with beams jetting out from a central rotating pole. The dogs are chained to one beam, and another small animal such as a cat or a rabbit is harnessed or hung from another. The dogs run in circles trying to capture the bait. Once the exercise sessions are over the dogs are rewarded with the bait. Drugs, supplements and vitamins are just a number of things that owners administer in order to excite the competitors, and ready them to fight. Iron, magnum, weight-gain supplements, cocaine, speed and steroids are just a number of different substances used in the dog fighting world. Not only are these used among the owners, but they are being administered to the dogs themselves.

The hardest thing is to educate and convince people on this touchy subject, that dog fighting should be prohibited in all States and Territories of Australia. Many people feel uncomfortable about this and therefore won’t do anything about it. Even though many are against dog fighting, very few act upon. There is many ways in order to get involved and take a stand against dog fighting. Organisations. Partner up with groups and organisations that focus on stopping the violence. Educate. Educate people about animal cruelty and responsible pet guardianship. Train the youth, and community leaders. All this could would go a long way in the illegalization of dog fighting. People spot signs of dog fighting, we need to act upon our true feelings and feel compassion for the weak and the unheard.

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