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The RSPCA has spoken out over the dangerous world of dog fighting and explained that most of the animals they find in these “fighting fraternities” have come from eastern European countries where dog fighting is legal.
In the UK pit bull terriers are banned under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 but in other European countries, these animals are being bred bigger, harder and more dangerous.
British gangs then import the animals through Dover to be embroiled in the fighting world.
Mike Butcher, RSPCA chief inspector for the special operations unit, said: “What they do is the dog will go down as a different breed of dog.
“I’m not saying it’s large numbers but a lot of dogs we see in the organised dog fighting are coming from eastern Europe and come through Dover.”
Mr Butcher explained that the RSPCA has good contacts with the port and if anything is reported as suspicious they will investigate - but the problem is spotting the signs.
He added: “Unless you’re an expert it’s hard to spot different breeds."
“People want the biggest dog that looks hard to make them look hard. They’re big, bred dogs and usually quite dangerous." Mr Butcher, RSPCA.
“People want the biggest dog that looks hard to make them look hard. They’re big, bred dogs and usually quite dangerous because of their size and the people haven’t got any idea how to look after them properly."
The Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency is responsible for live animal exports through the port and conduct spot checks.
A spokesman for AHVLA explained it has an oversight and auditing role.
He added: “We check that these operators are authorised to transport pets and we liaise with them on a regular basis to assess their competence.
“Any suspicion of illegal activity is reported to local authorities or the police to take appropriate action, including prosecution as necessary.”
For the full story read next week's Dover Mercury.
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