• Dog fighting is illegal in South Africa.
  • Dog fights are highly secretive and organized events, with their own sub-culture.
  • Most individuals who are part of a small group where dog fighting is routinely practised, will not bother with the legalities of their actions - dog fighting becomes a necessary and acceptable activity for them to be part of a specific group.
  • There is a direct link between animal abuse (dog fighting is one aspect of animal abuse) and criminal behaviour.
  • Dog fighting never happens in isolation, and is always part of other criminal activities, such as drug abuse, gambling, theft, etc.
  • Criminal behaviour is mostly learnt through people’s associations in groups.
  • Crime mostly occurs in an environment where the members of a society fail to supervise the other members properly. In the case of dog fighting, it means that although the members of society know that it is happening, they do not consider it worthy of proper attention. They have to cope with gang violence, etc. so reporting dog fighting is of less importance.
  • Dog fighters, and spectators, become indifferent to the pain and suffering of animals, just like most people would become indifferent to anything they do often enough. Violence towards, or the abusive treatment of dogs is seen as normal. Cruelty becomes routine.
  • Young children and adolescents who are exposed to dog fighting, become desensitised to animal abuse and violence, and accept this violence as normal. This can manifest as accepting violence against humans as routine.

Facts About Dog Fighting

  • A dog fight can last for more than two hours.
  • Dogs are often injected with steroids to make them fight longer.
  • The dog who loses, will not be taken to the vet (because dog fighting is illegal) and will be left alone to die of his/her injuries. These dogs are sometimes shot, electrocuted or dumped in the veld to die.
  • Bait animals, such as kittens, puppies and rabbits, are used to encourage aggression in dogs who are trained to fight.
  • Most bait animals are collected from unsuspecting owners who advertise their animals online as ‘free to good home’.
  • Bait animals are often put into bags, and suspended from poles for dogs to chase, or are tied up so that they cannot fight back. Pets are often stolen to be used as bait.
  • You can find out more about dog fights here:

How Can You Help?

  • Report illegal dog fighting to the NSPCA: 011 907 3590. Alternatively, contact us and we’ll report on your behalf.
  • Be an advocate for animals. Educate your community about the horrors of dog fighting.
  • Contact us for support or to organize a protest in your neighbourhood.
  • Never advertise animals online as “free to good home”. You never know where they might end up.

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