Cockfighting is a blood sport that involves handlers breeding and training roosters to be especially aggressive so that they can one day be thrown into an enclosure to fight to the death as people bet on the winner. Before their match, the roosters have their feathers plucked, their waddles sliced, and dagger-like weapons affixed to their bodies to make the match even more gruesome.

Cockfighting is illegal in every state; however, there are many illegal cockfighting rings and rooster trafficking operations in the U.S. Sadly, even when these rings get busted, the roosters don’t always get the treatment that they deserve. They are deemed “incapable of rehabilitation” and thus, are usually euthanized. This rooster, Derek Zoolander, was one of the lucky ones that got to escape this fate.

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Derek Zoolander was rescued from a cockfighting bust in California, where authorities found 300 live roosters and 50 dead. Because roosters from these situations are aggressive around other roosters, the Farm Sanctuary had to keep him separate from the other rooster that they rescued, Hansel. They introduced Derek to two of their goats Maurice and Marcia and they hit it off instantly. Now he is much more comfortable around humans and loves spending peaceful days in the hay with his friends. And don’t worry, Hansel too found some new friends. He was paired with three lambs, Timi, Mason, and Topanga, and two goats, Clark and Kent!

These two roosters, like so many other rescued animals, endured so much suffering at the hands of humans. We’re so happy to know that now, they can live out their days in peace and never have to be forced to fight for a cruel “sport” ever again.

If you’d like to help the Farm Sanctuary rescue and take care of animals like Derek Zoolander, you can donate here.

Some animal welfare experts have called the “cockfighting capital of the United States.” To help end this cruel blood sport, sign this petition to demand that Oklahoma enforce its anti-cockfighting laws now!

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