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It should come as no surprise that dog fighting is a felony in Fort Worth. Dog fighting is defined as a situation where a person causes one dog to fight another dog.
The most obvious violation of this statute is just that – causing a dog to fight another dog. The dog fighting statute is broader than that violation. If a person receives earnings as a result of dog fighting, they, too, are guilty of the offense. Further, if a person operates a facility which is used for dog fighting, they have also violated the statute. It is also illegal to own a dog with the intent of using it to fight. Similarly, individuals who train dogs for dog fighting violate the law. Finally, even spectators can be charged under Texas’ dog fighting statute.
Individuals who own or possess dog fighting equipment, for the purpose of training dogs for dog fighting, or to otherwise advance dog fighting are guilty under the statute. Dog fighting equipment includes equipment used for both training or handling dogs designated to fight. This can include harnesses, treadmills, cages, decoys, pens, feeding apparatus, and houses designed for keeping fighting dogs, as well as training pens. It also includes the equipment necessary for transporting a fighting dog, including cars, trailers, etc. Additionally, equipment used to promote or advertise dog fighting, including printing presses, other similar equipment, paper, ink, etc., are considered “dog fighting equipment.” Finally, the dog itself, if trained, being trained, or kept with the intent of fighting other dogs can be considered dog fighting equipment. More information can be found by referencing Texas Penal Code Section 42.10.