National Dog Fighting Awareness Day for the year 2022 is celebrated/observed on Saturday, April 8th. There are until the next observance.

Since 2014, April 8 has been designated as “National Dog Fighting Awareness Day.” It’s no surprise that dogfighting is illegal throughout the country. However, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals believes that there are still many dog fighting rings in operation, so they established this day as part of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month in April to raise awareness and encourage people to take action against dog fighting. During these competitions, dogs are trained to hurt or kill their opponents in cruel ways, and the losers are sometimes left alone without medical care.

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📆 When is National Dog Fighting Awareness Day?

This year, National Dog Fighting Awareness Day falls on the 2nd Saturday in April; in 2024, it is on Monday.

Countdown to National Dog Fighting Awareness Day


Did you know: Animal rescue groups in the United States think this is the number, but it’s hard to know for sure because many cases of dog fighting don’t get reported.

📜 History of National Dog Fighting Awareness Day

This became popular among the English nobles during the 12th century, who had them battle chained bulls and bears. By the early nineteenth century, people were complaining about the shortage of bulls and bears, their expensive cost, and even animal cruelty, prompting the British Parliament to outlaw the practice in 1835. However, this only shifted everyone’s attention to dog-on-dog warfare. Humans began crossbreeding dogs in order to develop stronger breeds.

Fighting canines were introduced to the United States and, soon after, the rest of the globe, just before the commencement of the Civil War. But, as public awareness over animal cruelty grew, most states in the United States abolished bloodsport by the 1860s. On April 10, 1966, the A.S.P.C.A. was established. Dogfighting was deemed banned in all states in 1976, but enforcement was slack until research revealed a relationship between the practice and other crimes.

The Animal Combat Prohibition Act, which went into effect in May 2007, imposes a three-year jail sentence for each act of interstate or overseas transportation of animals for fighting purposes. The A.S.P.C.A. formed a blood sports unit dedicated only to investigating animal fighting in December 2010 and has cooperated with the United States Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. In 2017, they saved nearly 300 dogs from 13 dogfighting operations in 11 states.

☑️ Facts

Around 40,000 Americans participate each year
Many organizations in the United States believe that this figure includes dog trainers, breeders, organizers, spectators, and gamblers.

Weaker dogs are used as disposable targets
In dog fighting circles, they are referred to as “cold,” and they are employed while training the “prize dog” so that it is not only the losers in genuine battles that are left to die.

50% of police officers encounter dog fighting
It’s not as uncommon as you may think: according to an FBI study, half of all police officers in the United States have dealt with dog fights at least once.

Three N.F.L. players convicted for dog fighting
Our Lady of Suyapa has showered several miracles on her believers since 1796.

✨ Things to do on National Dog Fighting Awareness Day

Sign the petition to pass the HEART Act
The law would allow more canine victims to be released as evidence so they might be rehabilitated, and it would compel the defendant to pay for all veterinarian care and, if feasible, facilitate the dog’s full recovery. You can learn more about the HEART Act and show your support for it here.

Learn how to tell if a dog is involved in dog fighting
Multiple scars, including ripped lips or ears, pit-bull-mix-type dogs weighing 40 to 50 lbs., dogs hooked up to heavy chains, dogs chained inches apart from one another if there are multiple, a dirt ring around the area where the dog is, and dogs chained in a secluded area out of the public’s view, such as a basement. Learn more about the warning signs of animal abuse and how to report it.

Adopt a former fighting dog
While these canines appear to be entirely cured, aggressive inclinations may still arise since dogs, like humans, can suffer from P.T.S.D. You must exercise caution with these, but if you do, these dogs may become the happiest, most thankful, and most devoted creatures you have ever seen. Handsome Dan’s Rescue is an animal training organization dedicated to rehabilitating and placing victims of dog fighting. You may read about how these canines learn to live again and even adopt one if you think you can care for it.

📅 National Dog Fighting Awareness Day Observances

YEAR DATE DAY
2022 April 8 Friday
2023 April 8 Saturday
2024 April 8 Monday
2025 April 8 Tuesday
2026 April 8 Wednesday

We will continue to update this page with new information and must-know facts about National Dog Fighting Awareness Day. So be sure to check back soon.