Many of us are unaware of the grave atrocities that animals are subjected to at very large scale, such atrocities are not only inhuman and shocking but are very insensitive in nature too. Some of these practices are carried out through sports. One of them is known as ‘Dog Fighting’.
Dog fighting is a blood sport in which two dogs are pitted against each other in a fighting pit and forced to rip each other to death, for the amusement and monetary gain of spectators and gamblers.
The barbaric dog fighting tradition dates back to the 18th century, and has now made its way into India. It’s an international racket where dogs are smuggled from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Australia, all the way into India.
At the outskirts of Delhi, mainly in farmhouses in Gurugram and Noida, people gather regularly to watch dogfights. These fights have moved from rural pockets of Punjab and Haryana, to urban spaces where dogs are made to battle with each other. It has become the latest pass-time of Delhi’s suburban rich. The dogs are unleashed on each other and bets are placed on the winner.
Enormous amount of money is spent on training the dogs. A lot of atrocities are committed in this process, like keeping dogs in cages without food and cutting off their tails and ears, so that the dogs win the fights through sheer rabid anger. Dogs that are used for fighting are chained, taunted and starved in order to trigger extreme survival instincts and encourage aggression. Dogs who do not fight or who lose fights are often abandoned, tortured, set on fire, shot, drowned or beaten to death. The dogs are also injected with steroids and some breeders go as far as to sharpen their dogs’ teeth, cut off their ears (in order to prevent another dog from latching on), and add roach poison to their food so that their fur might taste bad to other dogs. Fights go on for hours until one dog is seriously injured or dies.
Another such widely known sport in which animals are exploited at large is bullfighting. There has been a long and consistent history of protest against the bullfighting that is rampant in Spain, but not much is being done about the dog fights that go on in secret. Since dog fights and betting is illegal, they are secretly organized. Despite a few arrests, the popularity of the sport hasn’t decreased. Even though it is illegal under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and has been banned by the Supreme Court, it is still treated as a weekend sport in Delhi-NCR and the nearby areas of Haryana.
Dogs are a highly social pack of animals that need and deserve love, attention, and the companionship of other dogs and human guardians. Just because an animal cannot talk does not mean it cannot feel. Senseless murder and torture of animals is a cruelty that should not be condoned by the society.
We need to be more sensitive towards the lives with whom we share the planet with. It’s time to put an end to dogfights and save humans’ best friend. The blameless creatures have a right to live respectably, fully and happily. Greed-driven human monsters need the most stringent of punishments.