Distressing as it may be to realize that cruel dog fighting still goes on, the reality is that organizations such as the Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS) continue to uncover new cases of illegal fighting rings on a regular basis. The animal protection group says, “‘Man’s best friend’ may fight to the death in dogfights, often with tens of thousands of dollars at stake. Dogfighters sometimes kill the blousing dogs, and even winning dogs may die from their wounds. Police often discover drugs, guns, and even murder in connection with dogfights.”
When the canine victims of these fighting rings are finally rescued from their lives of terror and enforced aggression, they often have a long road ahead of them before they are prepared to trust humans and learn how to love again. However, it is entirely possible for such dogs to become loving family pets and companions, if they are given all of the care and attention they need.
Sixty-five dogs rescued from a “hog-dog” fighting ring in Cottonwood, Ala., by the HSUS in January have now recovered sufficiently from their ordeal to start seeking loving forever homes … and their transformations are nothing short of incredible!
When the pooches were originally taken out of their horrendous situation by HSUS field responders, their condition was desperate.
They had been living in dilapidated barrels, cowering under cars, or “shivering alone on chains.”
No food or fresh water was in sight.
One dog, Violet, had clearly been bred repeatedly. Most of her fur was gone, her skin was seriously infected, and her ribs protruded.
The condition of the pups moved rescuers to tears.
After being taken to a temporary shelter, the dogs had to go to school every day to learn how to sit, lie down and even master the simple art of accepting food from a human, which terrified them. The HSUS team said, “Even just crossing a doorway was really tough (for them).”
They now love to take dips in the pool! Another favorite pastime is walking on the grass, simply reveling in the sensation of it beneath their toes.
They have learned how to express love and affection toward their carers…
… and are well on the road to recovery.
Violet now weighs 103 pounds, and carers are happy to report that “her coat is full, soft and brilliant white, her ribs no longer showing.”
Some of the resilient pooches have moved on to HSUS’s placement partners on the west coast and are now awaiting adoption. We hope that every one of them finds the kind, caring animal guardians they deserve and that they will never again have to experience the pain of abuse.
To find out what action to take if you suspect that a dog fighting ring is in operation near you, check out these resources today:
- 10 Ways You Can Help End Dog Fighting
- 5 Animal Cruelty Reporting Hotlines You Should Have in Your Phone
- Animal Rescue Hotline Directory
All image source: HSUS