*** See below for update***
On Sundays or fiesta days in the Philippines the so called "sport" of Horse Fighting is illegally conducted. Two stallions are pitted against each other and results in horrific injuries and deaths and often last for hours.
Some stallions are hit so hard in the head their eyes are popped from their sockets. If death doesn't result from the kicks and bites and gruesome injuries, then the horses are inhumanely slaughtered and barbecued and fed to the crowd. Others limp around in the arena with a glazed look in their eyes or break limbs as they try to escape from the bloody arena.
These stallions fight due a mare on heat which is used as bait in the arena for up to six hours - often she is hit by stray blows from the stallions and has to suffer being mated by the winning stallion of each bout - up to 30 times in one tournament. The more blood shed, the louder the crowd during these fights.
Although horse-fighting is illegal in the Philippines, corruption and lack of enforcement ensure that the tournaments continue - and with apparent official sanction.Matches are featured on TV, and local businesses sponsor horses and tournaments. Local authorities offer prize money.The tournaments are promoted as a "cultural tradition", but in fact they are largely organised and controlled by crime syndicates, who rake in huge profits from gambling.
Republic Act 8485, also known as the Animal Welfare Act, outlawed all horse fighting in 1998. However, with penalties ranging from a minimum of 1000 pesos (approx. £10) to a maximum of 5000 pesos (approx. £50), horse fighting organizers pay little heed to the law.
Despite being illegal, not one person has been prosecuted for engaging in horse fighting since the passage of RA 8485 in 1998. Modest attempts to curtail horse fighting have been instituted by the national government’s Animal Welfare Division, to no avail. Local government in the regions where horse fighting is prevalent is fiercely protective of the activity and generally defies any attempts to enforce the law.
By signing this petition you are urging the Government of the Philippines to uphold its own Laws and ban this barbaric "traditional" sport.
For more info go to networkforanimals.org
UPDATE 2/10/09 - The Filipino Government have been contacted yet again about the success of this petition and I am awaiting their reply yet again. This petition has also been used by local Animal Welfare charities to help voice their concerns to their Government about the disgust of overseas countries/individuals - and potential tourists- of the bloodsport of horse fighting. Local charities are very positive about the success of this petition. So please keep signing and urge your friends and family to sign the petition as well.
Update 19/5/09 The Government of the Philippines and Officials from the Dept Of Agriculture have been contacted once again and advised that over 10,000 people throughout the world are appalled by their countries' lack of enforcement of it's own legislation to stop this barbaric bloodsport. Will advice of the reply when received. This petition also has the support of Philippine Animal Welfare agencies. Please keep forwarding the link to this petition so others may have their voice heard.
Update August 8, 2013 With more than 15,000 supporters against this "sport", any re-emergence needs to be stopped.
The Undersigned may also consider boycotting travel to the Philippines while Horse Fighting in this country continues.