Legislation will help victims of dog fighting, like Honey, and we need your help to pass it into law

A pit bull terrier named Honey is the latest victim of dog fighting in York County. She was found recently with severe injuries to her face and jaw, consistent with dog fighting. Her wounds were so severe her jaw had to be reconstructed and she is getting nourishment from a feeding tube. She will have a long road to recovery, but thanks to the great volunteers at CPAA – the Central Pennsylvania Animal Alliance, the staff at the York SPCA and the great veterinary care she has received, she should recover.

CPAA was able to raise enough money for her surgery, but she was diagnosed with babesia, a disease almost exclusively found in dogs from dog fighting yards, since the most common form of transmission is bite wounds and ticks. According to the Companion Animal Parasite Council, dogs can become infected with babesia via direct dog-to-dog transmission such as dog bites, blood transfusions or contaminated needles and surgical instruments, as well as through tick feeding.  However, there is a high prevalence of babesia in pit bull terriers, the type of dog often used for dog fighting.

Kris Baker is a volunteer for CPAA and heads up their Anti-Dog Fighting Task Force. She said Honey is the third dog fighting victim she has seen since March in the city of York.  She said someone has to know something. Kris also said some dog fighters are actually vet techs, so that they can have access to the surgical equipment to work on the dogs. Dog fighting is illegal in PA, but victims such as Honey are proof that it is still happening. If you suspect dog fighting is happening in your community please call: 1-877-Tip-HSUS, all calls are kept anonymous.

What to look for:

  • Large number of pit bulls – four or more
  • Dogs with scars, wounds, broken legs that have not been set
  •  Large chains and thick collars
  • Conditioning equipment – treadmill made for dogs, steroids, etc.
  • Large number of break sticks that are well used – blood stained, teeth marks, hair, etc.
  • Pits for the dogfight to take place

More information can be found here on how to recognize dog fighting.

Dogfighting does not just hurt the dogs, it hurts the community.  Drugs, guns, violence, and other illicit activities go hand and hand with the crime. Cracking down on the possession of, and the suppliers of animal fighting paraphernalia is one way to help put an end to it and a bill to address this was recently introduced in the PA House.

PA State Rep. Todd Stephens‘ bill, HB 2515, would close down any illicit operations that make or sell animal fighting paraphernalia; from the razor sharp knives used to make cockfights bloodier, to the conditioning equipment used to prepare dogs to fight. The bill has been introduced with the following co-sponsors: O’NEILL, BRENNAN, BROOKS, CLYMER, D. COSTA, COX, DAVIS, DePASQUALE, J. EVANS, FARRY, GIBBONS, GINGRICH, HESS, HORNAMAN, KORTZ, MILLER, MURT, PICKETT, ROCK, SAYLOR, SIMMONS, STABACK, SWANGER, WHITE, RAVENSTAHL, GILLEN, B. BOYLE and GILLESPIE.

We thank these legislators for recognizing the importance of cracking down on the very suppliers of equipment that is used for animal fighting. If your representative is not listed as a cosponsor, please contact them today and ask them to cosponsor HB 2515, or commit to supporting the bill. Click here to find your legislators.

Categories: Uncategorized

Author:Brett Miller

Animal Welfare Advocate


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