"...it's true that these breeds love fighting so much that we could discuss about whether dogfighting is -- in the case of these breeds -- mistreatment of the dogs..."What's truly mind-boggling is that this statement did not come from a professional dogfighter. It's not from a gang lord or a drug dealer to justify using dogfight gambling to make and move money. This is from a professional dog trainer.
How any professional could think that dogfighting -- torn skin, deep punctures, broken bones, and the abusive "training" to prepare and then separate fighting dogs (one method of breaking apart is to hold flame to a dog's genitals) -- is not "mistreatment" is utterly beyond me. The statement that a pit bull sincerely enjoys this justifies the abuse and criminalizes the breed.
I do agree with some of what this person said, that pit bulls should not be given greater latitude in behavior or temperament simply because they are poor, victimized pit bulls. I am not in favor of passing an iffy dog through a temperament test because of breed, whether that dog is a often-abused pit bull type or a can't-be-really-aggressive Golden Retriever. I do agree that people shouldn't choose a pit bull just to make a point or just to coddle one and they should be aware that the breed -- like every single other breed -- has advantages and drawbacks. But I am utterly, wholly, madly against criminalizing a breed and justifying the worst of human cruelty.
There are many, many sites with awful, graphic photos of the results of dogfighting. These should be enough to convince that it is far beyond "mistreatment," but I'm going to include a link to photos taken just this past weekend, of an abandoned fighting dog left to die on the side of a road -- one broken foreleg, one previously-broken and badly healed foreleg, more than fifty punctures "large enough to put a finger in," and more. This dog could not be saved and was euthanized. But tell me -- could you look into this dog's face and say you believed he enjoyed this? Can you look at this dog and say that it's not abuse, not mistreatment, not a terrible human problem creating trouble for our community and our dogs?
EDIT: Indy Pit Crew's flier on Dog Fighting Awareness can be downloaded here! Fight illegal dogfighting!
EDIT #2: I wanted to share the following comment (from someone else, on the dog in the photos) as well --
"Poor, injured, tortured dog, limping toward strangers on its broken forelegs, seeking help. Things like this make me think that the people responsible need to suffer similar treatment. It's just awful... and tragic for the dogs."
I find it amazing that this dog, after all it had been through, was still seeking people. The true human-friendly origin of the breed is still in there, despite all that's been done. We humans need to own up to our actions.