For weeks the San Francisco news media have headlined
stories about pit bull
fights featuring gruesome photos of half-dead dogs used as bait to train
missing voices in these stories invariably are those of the young people
breed, train, fight, sell, abuse -- and sometimes love -- pit bulls.
What makes pit
bulls vicious? How does a fight start? What draws people to the cruelty
fight -- the thrill of making money or something else? PNS commentator
R. Jones (aka CRJ) exchange views on these questions with his friend
CRJ is a staff reporter for YO! Youth Outlook, a newspaper by and about
people published by Pacific News Service.
CRJ: What's your name?
CRJ: How does a dog fight happen?
Squirt: It starts off like this: the owner walks down
the street and sees another
owner with a dog tied up. He asks, "Do you want to fight?" and the other
says "Yes." They may bet money on the side or they may bet the dog's
they may just say, "We're fighting for souls."
CRJ: What gets the dogs to fight?
Squirt: Sometimes the owner puts cocaine on their nose.
That's like a man
drinking beer -- it gets the dog on the evil tip. Then they go up in the
field or out
in the middle of the street. They don't be caring who sees.
CRJ: How do people feel about dog fighting?
Squirt: They love it. Even mothers come out to watch.
Seeing two dogs going at
it -- like a life is about to be took. It's a trip when it happens, way
better than a
CRJ: How do you feel about dog fighting?
Squirt: I think (it's) cool if it's just one-on-one, but
if you use one dog for a bunch
of pit bulls to just rip up, that ain't cool.
CRJ: You don't think it's mean to dogs even one-on-one?
Squirt: It depends on what type of dog it is. If it's
the same size and nature of
dog and is ready to go the rounds, let 'em go. But if it's a little
wimpy dog against
something like a Rottweiler, leave it alone.
CRJ: I hear you. It's like dogs have
personalities...I've seen dogs that just didn't
like other dogs.
Squirt: Yeah. You can't blame people for exploiting that
anger to their advantage.
From what I seen, it's some dogs that's born evil even as little
CRJ: So you wouldn't fight, say, a German shepherd
because it isn't as violent in
nature as a pit bull?
Squirt: No, that's wrong because a k-9 can be worse than
a pit. The trainer also
makes a dog vicious. It depends on who trains it. A shep can be trained
to be a
straight man-eater, but it isn't born mad. Pits are. That's why they're
dogs." They'll turn on you in a rage.
CRJ: A dog is an expensive possession. It seems only
fair for dogs to earn their
keep by fighting. Is that why owners fight them?
Squirt: Some people fight dogs for cash cuz it's their
only income, or some fight
out of love or pride. But mainly they like to gamble on the dog's life,
money. They want to see which dog is best.
CRJ: How many dogs you got?
CRJ: What's his name?
Squirt: He's a pit terrier named Fluffy Mac.
CRJ: That's a trip. Remember when we was little the
toughest dog around was
always a Shepherd named King. Now it's pits and ruts like Undertaker and
Dahmer. So much changes as you grow up. When you're little, you make
puppies fight by bumping their noses together. As you age it all gets so
People get shot, dogs get shot, money is won and lost. It's deep.
Squirt: Where I used to live there was a stray pit (very
rare) named Cocaine. The
dudes outside used to use Cain as a sparring partner to get him off the
set or just
give his dog a good fight. Well, this time Cain won and almost murdered
dog. So dude dragged his dog across the street and set him on fire.
CRJ: What did you think about that?
Squirt: It's cool, I guess. I don't hit my dog or nothin'
if he lose a fight. That's why
I don't fight him if he scared. It would be stupid to hit him when he
lost if he didn't
wanna fight in the first place. I'm outta $200, my dog all ate up, we
kinda bad, you feel me?
CRJ: Why fight a dog? Why do you?
Squirt: To gain respect for the dog and owner. No one
will bother you without gun.
Go on to Job
Return to 27 June 1999 Issue
Return to Newsletters
** Fair Use Notice**
This document may contain copyrighted material, use of which has not been
specifically authorized by the copyright owners. I believe that this
not-for-profit, educational use on the Web constitutes a fair use of the
copyrighted material (as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright
Law). If you wish to use this copyrighted material for purposes of your
own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright