Lucknow, Aug 16 (IANS): The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), India, has written to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and urban development minister Arvind Kumar Sharma, urging them to prohibit the keeping, breeding, and sale of dogs for illegal fighting and also shut down illegal pet shops and breeders.
The PETA appeal comes in the wake of two pitbull attacks where a teenager was critically injured in Meerut and an elderly woman was mauled to death in Lucknow.
PETA India has said that the ban be achieved by requiring owners to declare breeds placed on the prohibited list for mandatory sterilisation and government registration within a month of the issuance of the directive as well as by prohibiting any new such dogs from being bred, kept, or sold after a stipulated date.
The state has already reportedly shown an interest in prohibiting pitbull, rottweiler, and mastiff breeds.
In an official release, PETA India Veterinary Policy Advisor Dr Nithin Krishnegowda said: "These attacks are a wake-up call that if India continues to allow dogs, typically used for cruel human exploits such as criminal dogfighting-- to be bred, more people will get hurt. A prohibition on all breeds used for unlawful fighting would protect these dogs from being born only to face cruelty and suffering and protect many humans, too."
In India, inciting dogs to fight is illegal under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act, 1960. Yet organised dogfights are prevalent in parts of North India, making Pitbull-type dogs and others used in these fights the most abused dog breeds.
Pitbulls are commonly bred to be used in illegal fighting or kept on heavy chains as attack dogs, resulting in a lifetime of suffering.
Many endure painful physical mutilations such as ear-cropping, an illegal process that involves removing part of a dog's ears to prevent another dog from grabbing them during a fight.
These dogs are encouraged to continue fighting until they become exhausted and at least one is seriously injured or dies.*