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Number Of PSPCA Animal Fighting Cases On The Rise

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Michael Vick speaks at a conference (file)

Michael Vick speaks at a conference (file)

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Philadelphia Eagles and the Pennsylvania SPCA are expected to announce details later Thursday about a new program to attack the problem of dog fighting. This comes as animal fighting cases in the city are on the rise.

The PSPCA investigated 1,177 animal fighting cases last year, almost five times more than the amount in 2008 where there were 237 investigations. There were 836 cases in 2009. The cases involve mostly dog fighting, but there are some cock fighting cases included in the numbers.

The agency’s CEO Susan Cosby says it’s not clear if there is actually more animal fighting going on or just more reporting of it.

“We are not sure it’s rising because people are now becoming aware that you can be arrested and you can go to jail and serve time for this crime,” she said. “That may be an impetus as far as people reporting where as before they might not have thought it got the attention that it needed.”

She says there is large public awareness of animal fighting after the Michael Vick case.

“I know that there were probably many people who prior to the Michael Vick case maybe didn’t even know that dog fighting existed, or they thought that it was something that happened once in a while in a small, poor corner of a city.”

Cosby says the work that the organization does is supported by donors and people who care.

“So people who care can really make a difference. Having the man power and having the money to be able to follow through with everything is the critical part for us.”

If you would like to donate to the PSPCA go to www.pspca.org.

Reported by John McDevitt, KYW Newsradio

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