Mixed Martial Arts Fighters are "Knocking Out Dog Fighting"

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For Pits' Sake, Inc. has teamed up with Mixed Martial Arts fighters from the American Kickboxing Academy to "Knock Out Dog Fighting" by teaching kids that it is not a symbol of strength, power, or greatness to abuse or fight animals.

Dog fighting is animal abuse, plain and simple. Torturing animals is not cool; nor is it a sign of being a real man. Real fighters stand up for what's right and protect those who are unable to do so.

Josh "The Punk" Thomson, Mixed Martial Arts Lightweight Champion, speaks out against dog fighting with a new PSA as part of the "Knock Out Dog Fighting" campaign by For Pits' Sake, Inc. He will be fighting for the Strikeforce World Lightweight Championship title on June 27, 2008 at 8:00pm at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, CA.

This is the second PSA completed by world class Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighters who are demonstrating that they are champions in and out of the ring by joining For Pits' Sake to knock out dog fighting. Champion Josh Thomson wanted to provide a positive role model for children and appears in the PSA with his English bulldog Brady. He gives a strong message: "Dog fighting is animal abuse, plain and simple. Torturing animals is not cool; nor is it a sign of being a real man. Real fighters stand up for what's right and protect those who are unable to do so."

The "Knock Out Dog Fighting" program is part of an educational campaign by For Pits' Sake which has gained momentum in the wake of widespread media coverage of the Michael Vick case which brought never before seen attention to the barbaric activity of dog fighting. As horrific as the details in the Vick investigation were, they showed us the pit bull as what he really is...a victim. The investigation and conviction of Michael Vick gave the American public a glimpse of the sadistic world of dog fighting. We learned that dog fighters not only force these animals to fight to the death, many also engage in violence against the dogs by means of electrocution, strangulation, kicking, and other unimaginable acts of cruelty.

In addition to the other illegal activities that go on at these events, dog fighting affects more than the animals. Dog fighters or spectators often involve their children in dog fighting. Sadly, this desensitizes children to violence and the suffering of others not only from the exposure, but also because dog fighting is condoned and even glorified by adults and role models. They are taught to believe that it is okay to inflict the cruelties they observe and that dog fighting is an acceptable form of recreation.

For Pits' Sake founder Kris Crawford believes that one of the most effective ways to stop the cycle of violence is to teach young people about the proper treatment of animals. This type of education can create a cycle of a different sort: a cycle of compassion. "Through the many activities I've done with my pit bulls Cheyenne, Dakota, and Tahoe - we have been able to teach and influence children all over the world. However, there are some segments that we just cannot reach. That's why we have recruited the American Kickboxing Academy, the premier Mixed Martial Arts training facility, to help. Many children look up to these fighters and view them as role models. In addition to the PSAs, we visit schools and children's groups to teach children that it is not a symbol of power, strength, or greatness to abuse or torture animals."

The first PSA by Cung Le, Undefeated World Champion MMA Middleweight Title Holder and Undefeated World Light Heavyweight San Shou Champion, makes it clear that there can be no comparison between the fighting arts and dog fighting: "I have a choice to step inside the cage to fight. But there are a lot of helpless animals who are not given that choice. Dog fighting is cruel and inhumane and those who engage in it are losers."

For Pits' Sake and the participating members of the American Kickboxing Academy hope that their community outreach program will shed more light on the prevalence of dog fighting, its' overall effect on the community, and will knock out the social acceptance of this activity. Their goal is to end the violence of dog fighting because the real victim of dog fighting is society.

Help stop the abuse. Show your strength and join us in Knocking Out Dog Fighting! For more information and to obtain broadcast version of Josh's PSA, go to http://www.KnockOutDogFighting.org.

About For Pits' Sake, Inc. (http://www.ForPitsSake.org)
For Pits' Sake, Inc., a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, has been a leader in the community for both human and animal rescue efforts, humane education and safety programs for children for over a decade. The For Pits' Sake pit bulls, Cheyenne, Dakota, and Tahoe, were world-famous search and rescue dogs who responded to over 200 search missions including high profile cases such as the search for Laci Peterson and the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster. The For Pits' Sake girls have received numerous awards, including the American Red Cross Santa Clara Valley Real Heroes award, a Certificate of Appreciation from the FBI as well as a letter from the Governor of California stating that they "demonstrate the true strength of California and represent the best of the Golden State". Cheyenne, Dakota & Tahoe are also trained therapy dogs and now spend their time teaching safety programs at schools and to children's groups, working with physically and mentally challenged children and also battered and abused children.

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Erik Stone
For Pits' Sake, Inc.
(702) 518-7487
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