Inside The World Of Dogfighting

Warning: This story may disturb some readers.

One of the dogs seized from Vick's houseWith all of the attention brought to light towards dogfighting due to the investigation involving Michael Vick’s property, Newsweek spoke to a detective for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department to better understand what happens in the world of dogfighting. Detective C.R. Beals has been focusing on dogfighting for more than 10 years and has been an expert witness in numerous dogfighting cases.

Detective Beals explains that there are three different types of dogfighting: professional, hobbyists (these are aspiring to be professionals), and street-level fighters (these people torture their dog into being mean and will fight anything).

The professional dog fighters are very well organized and extremely secretive and they will even fly dogs across the United States. The dogs are put in specific weight classes. The start of the fight begins when the dogs turn around and face each other. There is a scratch line and when a dog “scratches” (crosses this line), the dog is ready for the fight and the fight begins.

More on dogfighting after the jump.

Detective Beals explains that actual death during the fight is not as often as most people would think. During the fight, the dogs will be stopped short of death. The owners of the dogs will apply their own veterinary medicine and mostly, dogs will die of infection, die of shock after the fight or they are injured so badly that they expire.

To condition the dogs, the owners will have dogs pull around weighted sleds. There is also a spring pole “which is simply either a tree or a large pole with a spring or a cable or tire on it and the dog will jump up and grab it. He will actually hang on to it and bounce and have his own personal tug of war.”

To catch dog fighters, authorities will use informants and people in the neighborhood that have noticed something strange going on. The most prominent type of dogfighting is the street -level dogfighting because “it’s in your face and practiced by gangs. They’ll use anything that has four legs.”

Detective Beals states that not only are professional athletes involved in dogfighting but also there have been law enforcement officers, professional people, blue-collar people and gangsters involved in this crime.

10 Responses to “Inside The World Of Dogfighting”

  1. Susan says:

    In the 70’s is was popular to publish a prostitute’s “john book” to embarrass people. The trend went out due to privacy laws. However, I think the same should be done to people who are involved in dogfighting (breeding, training, arranging, promoting, gambling, attending, etc.). Michael Vick is the one with the breeders license. They should follow the trail and get them all. And make a public spectacle of them.

  2. Debra says:

    How about providing a list of company’s who have signed endorsement contracts with Michael Vick. Let’s let those companies know that the public is not going to tolerate companies who support anyone involved with dog fighting.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Quote from article:

    I guess they feel like they have to do all that?
    Yes, because there are people who are animal lovers who would do everything up to and including put a bullet into some of these clowns.

    As someone that rescued a Pit from a situation like this my feelings on it are pretty harsh for the “clowns” that do this. The dog I rescued was the most loving gentle dog I have ever seen. When I first “obtained” the dog he was so torn up with injuries from fighting it was a wonder he even lived. It took several weeks of nursing him back to health. The vet bills were staggering, but the dog was worth the expense and effort to give him a safe environment (and family). I never had a problem with him unless another male dog was in his territory when his food was in sight. He thought he was a big ole lap dog and loved his family so much. He lived for several years after being rescued. I will always miss that sweet natured animal. The only “meanness” he had in him was taught to him by humans. How sad. At least he was able to live out his final years in peace with loving people around him.

  4. kaefamily says:

    Without doubt these same bastards treat their human beings with the same cruelty.

  5. catmom5 says:

    There is no punishment too severe for these evil human beings. I hope Michael Vick gets all he has coming to him ~ and I hope it will bring to the public awareness the atrocities of animal fighting. These animals are paying a tremendous price for the depravity of “human” beings.

    I would support finding out companies who endorse Michael Vick so we could tell them we won’t be buying from them unless they take a stand against animal fighting/fighters. In addition, I think the commissioners of professional sports should be contacted. This dirties the entire sport!

    This just sickens me . . .

  6. elizabeth says:

    I can’t even bear to read any more about all about the dog fighting cruelty that goes on. I DO know for certain that there will be a special extra- hot corner of hell for these nasty and inhumane criminals.

    I already expect a pretty large contingent of friends to be waiting for me at the rainbow bridge. But when the time comes I plan to look for at one of these poor, maimed, unloved, battle scarred dogs and take him across with us, too.

  7. Stefani says:

    I always thought that dog fighting was something poor people and immigrants did to make money and drug dealers did on the side. Now, to find out the the NFL — a group of very highly paid people — has a cadre of dog fighting enthusiasts — it is a big shock.

    Gives the word BRUTE new meaning.

  8. Katie says:

    I agree publish the names of all involved and who supports them with big adv. deals. The mindset of the people who participate in and enjoy dog fighting - it is scary to think about what other things they are involved in.

    NFL: it’s time for them to demand and expect their players and all who are involved to follow a moral and ethics code. This has gone on for to long.

    I too hope there is an especially hot corner in h_ _ _* for these people.

    The poor dogs, it is just so hard to believe what another human being is capable of.

    Elizabeth, I’m with you. I too ; expect to be greeted by all my friends at the rainbow bridge and plan on gathering as many of the unwanteds as I can to join my group when we cross.


  9. Lynne says:

    You all might be interested in learning that is selling dogfighting videos and cockfighting magazines. The Humane Society tells about it here:

    I contacted amazon and told them I would not be using their services until they stopped making money off of felonies. I also took the amazon links off my blog.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Thank you Lynne for the info. I need some books, and was going to purchase them through Amazon. I won’t be purchasing anything from them at all now.

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