Educating the Dog-Fighting Public??!!!?!

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Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
Barked: Sun Dec 23, '12 1:10pm PST 
Sean Moore Speaks

From Phiily.com

"Is it greed? Or is it a mental pathology, like sadism?

Animal-fighting experts and two former dogfighters offered a variety of insights in interviews, but all agreed on one thing: the attraction is intense.

"It's an addiction that's hard to get away from," said a former Philadelphia dogfighter who now feels remorse but still remembers the pull of breeding, raising, training and fighting pit bulls.

"It's the thrill of knowing things most people don't know, learning the business, the ego, the challenge," the dogfighter said.

Veteran dogmen become so immersed in the business, experts say, that it becomes an obsession.

"A lot of these dogfighters couldn't tell you their first son's birthday, but know the pedigree of every dog in their yard," said John Goodwin, of the Humane Society.

Among urban dogfighters, owning a menacing pit bull affords a street-tough status, an image reinforced by rap artists like DMX, who used dogfighting imagery in his work and was ultimately imprisoned for animal cruelty.

And two ex-dogfighters said that there is a kind of love between a dog owner and the animal he trains for mortal combat.

Former Chicago dogfighter Sean Moore said that he wept over dogs injured or killed in fights. "It's hard to explain," he said, "but you love your dog and train him to put him in a place where he can win, like a trainer getting his boxer ready to fight Muhammad Ali."

But Moore said that love turns to anger when a dog loses.

The former Philadelphia-area dogfighter learned to think of fighting dogs differently from pets: "The deeper you get into it, you love the animals, but it comes where you consider them livestock, because if the dog quits, you have to do one of two things - give the dog away, or have someone put the dog down.

"I wasn't attached to the fighting dogs," the dogfighter said. "The dogs crave attention. And - this is years ago, I couldn't see myself doing this today - but I'd give them the attention they need as long as they'd perform for me."

ASPCA psychologist Randall Lockwood said that gambling addiction and greed are part of the culture, and there's a streak of sadism in many dogfighters. "When we see folks involved in animal cruelty, a lot of it is about power and control and a sense of accomplishment through your animals," he said.

"As long as the dog is winning, the dogfighter loves his animal," said Tio Hardiman, who works in a Chicago anti-dogfighting program. "But when the dog goes on a losing streak, they end up killing him, so it's a bulls--t love affair."

"I can't believe what I've done, things that seem so cruel now," the Philadelphia dogfighter said. "To this day I have nightmares over what I've done."
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I might be able to get him here to speak and answer questions if everyone will behave.

HERE is a beneficiary of Sean Moore's work and the HSUS program. He was corralled by Moore recognizing he was on his way to fighting his dog...literally.

Edited by author Sun Dec 23, '12 1:17pm PST


Changing one- mind at a time - APBT style
Barked: Mon Dec 24, '12 2:41pm PST 
Good point on the "fun event" thing Tiller, I didn't think of it like that. But I still don't get how ADULTS can't be bothered to educate themselves. How can anyone actually think any animal enjoys having their faces and other body parts ripped into, sometimes off? It's just beyond me. I guess it's different if it's all you've experienced AND it's been made out to be "fun" and when myths that "Pit Bulls love to fight" run rampant.

I do know what it's like to have been naive and not understanding things. When I grew up I was always told all commercial dog food was the same, some brands were just more expensive because of "greed" (which I guess to some extent is true but I know they certainly are not all the same now). I was also raised that a flea dip when an animal has flees was sufficient. Even that "spanking" a dog was acceptable. Obviously I learned all of this was bunk later, but that's because I went out and started seeking information, I educated myself as an adult.

It ain't over- till the fat- kitty sings
Barked: Fri Dec 28, '12 4:03pm PST 
Interesting parallel there to human boxing. Of course it isn't exactly because humans do that by choice. But watching a human boxing match up close is horrifying. And there are humans that pay big bucks to get front row seats to the action.
Some humans do get off on witnessing brutality. The video games "Grand Theft Auto", "Mortal Kombat"-graphic cartoon violence...even Robot Chicken on TV...gruesome as broad humor.
Then add the gambling and greed aspect and we can certainly understand how dog and cockfighting remain in the culture and how difficult it is to completely eliminate it.
Wish I had thought of this topic for a term paper when I was in school, would make for a interesting book if it was objectively researched.

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