December 20, 2011
Humane Society International/Latin America and Costa Rican Government Launch Campaign to Combat Dogfighting
SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA — Humane Society International is working in conjunction with the Servicio Nacional de Salud Animal and the Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganaderia to launch a campaign against dogfighting in Costa Rica.
SENASA announced the launch of two new TV ads and printed materials, featuring boxer Hanna Gabriel, produced to educate the public about the cruelty of dogfighting. HSI's staff will work closely with SENASA to combat the widespread issue of this blood sport in Costa Rica when the campaign launches in 2012.
While dogfighting in Costa Rica is illegal, it is widespread and often surrounded by other criminal activity such as drugs, gang violence and alcohol abuse. The campaign will work to train law enforcement officials on handling busts and organize community outreach events. HSI will also work to involve youth at risk of becoming involved in dogfighting.
"Dogfighting is a cruel practice where even winning dogs often die because of their injuries,” said Cynthia Dent, regional director for HSI-Latin America. “We are thrilled that the Costa Rican government has prioritized going after dogfighting.” In addition to the new dogfighting program in 2012, the Costa Rican government is launching other animal welfare campaigns on stray animal and farm animal issues, among others.
- Dogs fight to the death in dogfights, often with tens of thousands of dollars at stake.
- Dogfighters sometimes kill the losing dogs, and even winning dogs may die from their wounds.
- Police often discover drugs, guns and other crimes in connection with dogfights.
- HSI asks that anyone with information about animal fighting criminals contact SENASA.
Humane Society International and its partner organizations together constitute one of the world's largest animal protection organizations—backed by 11 million people. HSI fights for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education, and hands-on programs. On the Web at hsi.org.