26 January 2017: The League Against Cruel Sports have teamed up with fresh, handmade cosmetics brand Lush to run window displays in 12 of its stores across the country this week, as part of the animal welfare charity’s wider campaign to stamp out dog fighting in the UK.

The Soapbox window displays which are running from Thursday 26 until Tuesday 31st January, will feature a striking black and white image of Cupcake, a Staffordshire bull terrier rescued and now undergoing rehabilitation after sustaining horrific injuries at the hands of dog fighters.

The displays and campaign flyers in-store will encourage members of the public to sign the charity’s petition calling for tougher sentencing for individuals convicted of the cruel sport, in addition to urging members of the public to report any information to its confidential Animal Crimewatch line.

Chris Pitt, Acting Director of Policy, Communications & Campaigns at the League said:

“Despite being made illegal in 1835 some experts believe there may be one dog fight a day in the UK, however being such a clandestine activity the reality is we don’t know for sure – that is why the League is investing a lot of time and energy to discover exactly how big the problem is – and how we stop it.

“The current maximum sentence stands at a mere six months imprisonment. This amounts to little more than a light slap on the wrist for committing abhorrent acts of animal cruelty, especially when compared to many other countries, where the maximum sentence lies between two and five years.

“We are delighted to be working with Lush and to have their support with this important campaign. Dog fighting like all cruel sports involving animals, belongs in the past. To ensure that this happens, we need to strengthen the law so that it acts as a deterrent.”

In addition to calling for a minimum three year custodial sentence, the League would like to see a national register of individuals banned from keeping animals, for dog fighting to made a recordable crime separate to animal fighting and for the Dangerous Dog Act to be reviewed as a matter of urgency and breed specific legislation repealed.

Olivia Graham, Supervisor, Lush Liverpool, comments: “Dog fighting is a gruesome betrayal of the loyalty shown to us from our most loved companions. Due to the secretive nature of the crime we wanted to launch the campaign in stores to start a dialogue with our customers, to let them know this is happening and gain their support in abolishing this inhumane act.“

The League are encouraging anyone with information regarding dog fighting to contact its confidential Animal Crimewatch line on 01483 361 108 or email any information directly to crimewatch@league.org.uk.

The League’s petition calling for stronger penalties for dog fighting can be signed here www.league.org.uk/dogfightingpetition.

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Notes to Editors

  1. For further information, comment or interview requests, please contact the League’s Press Office on 01483 524250 or email press@league.org.uk
  2. Lush stores running the campaign include: Liverpool, Manchester Market Street, Manchester Trafford, Warrington, Sheffield City Centre, Sheffield Meadowhall, Preston, Leeds White Rose, Leeds, Cardiff, Newcastle, Lancaster

    The League Against Cruel Sports is Britain's leading charity that works to stop animals being persecuted, abused and killed for sport. The League was instrumental in helping bring about the landmark Hunting Act. We carry out investigations to expose law-breaking and cruelty to animals and campaign for stronger animal protection laws and penalties. We work to change attitudes and behaviour through education and manage sanctuaries to protect wildlife.

    Find out more about our work at www.league.org.uk. Registered charity in England and Wales (no.1095234) and Scotland (no.SC045533).