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Cock Fighting in Thailand — Thai Fighting Cocks

Cock fighting in Thailand is legal and very popular in many areas, particularly in the rural North/North East. On the other hand gambling is illegal in Thailand, save for the national lottery, but is equally as popular with the majority of Thai people. It is perhaps therefore not surprising that cock fighting and illegal betting come together in many places around the rural landscape.

Strictly speaking each province in Thailand has one legally licensed cock fighting area, ” the cockpit.” Gambling is not allowed there. However you don’t have to look to hard outside the city limits to find an illegal cockpit or two where a few Baht change hands on a regular basis depending on the outcome of a cock fight.

The Thai word for the birds used in cock fighting is, ไก่ชน(Gai Chon), which translates to “fighting chicken.” Animal welfare in Thailand can leave a lot to be desired, however Thai fighting cocks tend to be pampered by their owners with birds being regularly groomed and often feed special diets. Top rated birds can change hands for many thousands of Baht.

Finding the Local Cock Pit — Thai Fighting Cocks

Just the other day I was visiting a friends new housing project when I glanced over a neighbouring wall, attracted by the sound of a couple of cockerels crowing. Instead of finding the family hens running round I found I was looking into the local cockpit where, besides the arena, there were also several roosters in their wooden cages.

I am led to believe that the use of artificial spurs are banned on Thai fighting cocks, or at least they are forbidden in the licensed cock fighting venues. What happens locally is of course a different matter and I have been told that artificial spurs are used in illegal gatherings here in the village.

Is Cock Fighting in Thailand Animal Cruelty

Can cock fighting be classed as animal cruelty? I certainly don’t think most Thai people would see it that way since they will point out that it is within the birds natural character to fight each other to establish dominance. Whilst I tend to agree that you can’t teach the birds to fight, creating the opportunity for Thai fighting cocks to come together might well seem cruel in some peoples eyes.

Personally I would not attend a cock fight in Thailand. What about you?

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