BREAKING: ASPCA Helps Remove More Than 200 Birds in Cockfighting Raid

June 9, 2017

an ASPCA volunteer holding a rooster

At the request of the Indiana Gaming Commission, the ASPCA is assisting with the removal of more than 200 birds from a property associated with cockfighting in Marion County, Indiana.

Upon arrival at the property on Friday morning, investigators found birds with physical alterations common in fighting birds, such as the removal of their combs and wattles. Cockfighting paraphernalia, including gaffs—long dagger-like attachments used to maximize injury during fights—and performance-enhancing supplements were also discovered.

The ASPCA is also assisting local authorities with evidence collection, medical assessments and transportation of the birds to a temporary shelter in an undisclosed location. “We are grateful to the ASPCA and Marion County Prosecutor’s Office for their support on this case,” said Superintendent Rob Townsend of the Indiana Gaming Commission. 

During cockfights, birds commonly suffer from injuries including punctured lungs, broken bones and pierced eyes. Death is often the outcome due to the severity of injuries.

“This investigation further demonstrates the cruel and inhumane practice of cockfighting,” said Kathryn Destreza, Director of Investigations for ASPCA Field Investigations and Response. “No animal should be forced to fight to their death. The ASPCA is proud to be on the front line of tackling organized animal fighting in America and commends the Indiana Gaming Commission for their commitment to bringing this brutal sport to an end.”  

Thanks to the support of people like you, these 200 innocent victims will never be forced to fight again. Please help us continue to be there for animals in need by making an urgent donation to the ASPCA today. Together, we can fight animal cruelty and make a lasting impact for abused, abandoned and neglected animals nationwide. 

Cockfighting is illegal in all 50 states and is a felony offense in 42 states and the District of Columbia. Visit our Cockfighting page to learn more.